We Tried Jameson's New Orange Whiskey. Here's How It Went

If you step into any average bar these days, there's a good chance you will spot Jameson Irish Whiskey nestled among the bottles spanning the liquor wall. The Irish spirit has been around since the 1700s when it was created by John Jameson and has remained a popular drink for St. Patrick's Day celebrations and beyond. Whether you're ordering a whiskey sour or a round of shots, Jameson is one of the best-selling whiskey products in the world (via Forbes). According to The Irish Times, Jameson sold more than 7.5 million cases of its product in 2020. 

The classic Jameson blend is triple-distilled and made with locally-sourced water. The taste is light, with notes of sherry, vanilla, and spices. The mild flavor makes it a solid option for whiskey cocktails and to drink straight-up on the rocks. The company distills a variety of spirits, mainly pairing its Irish whiskey with flavors from beer or coffee, among other special edition blends (via Jameson). But the versatility of the original blend has faired well for the brand. 

Recently, the distillery debuted a completely new product — Jameson Orange. A first for the company, the new spirit features classic Jameson whiskey with hints of orange. Mashed recently got our hands on a bottle to taste test Jameson Orange to see if it's worth switching to, or if you should stick to stocking the original version at your home bar. 

What is Jameson Orange?

The only visible difference between the original Jameson and Jameson Orange is the bright orange label. Both spirits come in your typical 750 milliliter bottle, so nothing out of the ordinary there. Unlike the original variety, which is 40% alcohol by volume according to Drizly, Jameson Orange comes in lighter at 30%. The new version takes the traditional Jameson Irish Whiskey we all know and love and combines it with orange flavoring. The bottle describes the liquor as a "smooth whiskey with natural zesty orange flavor." 

Similarly to other Jameson varieties, the packaging stays true to the distillery's highly recognizable branding. The bottle isn't plastered with photos of oranges to let you know there's a citrus twist — it keeps it classy and subtle with the inviting orange label. While the bottle doesn't come with any accompaniments, you might want to buy some soda, juice or whatever other mixers you like if you pick up a bottle to try it out. 

Where can you get Jameson Orange?

Since debuting the new product on January 12, Jameson Orange is available for purchase on liquor store shelves and in neighborhood bars nationwide. On Drizly, both original and orange Jameson cost around $30 a bottle, but prices will vary depending on store and location. It will clearly take time and customer input to determine whether or not Jameson Orange will be as popular and readily available as its beloved sibling. Don't be shocked if your favorite bar doesn't keep it in stock regularly at first, considering it is a totally new product. However, if you are into the citrus twist, it's not totally outrageous to suggest it to your local bar manager, who is probably placing orders from Jameson on the regular anyways. 

It looks like Jameson plans on keeping the orange flavor on the shelves for good, as there's no indication of a limited time availability in the press release announcing the product (via PR Newswire). As with any new product, it runs the risk of being discontinued if it isn't the smash hit that the company expects. But for now, it shouldn't be too hard for the average Joe to track down a bottle without too much effort. 

How does it compare to other Jameson products?

As previously mentioned, orange is not the first flavor Jameson has blended with its signature whiskey to provide new offerings to customers (via Jameson). Some of the options are typical for a whiskey brand — Jameson 18 Years is a rare whiskey aged for several years while Jameson Black Barrel features whiskey aged in charred barrels. Additionally, in the Jameson Caskmates series, the whiskey is aged in craft beer barrels to give it notes of brews like IPAs and stouts. 

If they want something a little less tradtional, customers can try Jameson Cold Brew, which takes the age-old pairing of coffee and Irish whiskey and puts it into a single bottle. The brand also has other special edition bottles, such as three versions of the Whiskey Makers Series that honors craft whiskey distillers. Jameson Orange is the first blend to feature fruit-focused flavors mixed into the bottle, so it's a departure from anything else the company has done before.

How does Jameson Orange taste?

Jameson Orange's flavor is a knockout. The second you open the bottle, your nose is met with the bright aroma of fresh-squeezed oranges. It's a crowd-pleasing option for a tasty shot or a quick drink on the rocks — its zesty flavor still has the distinct taste of Jameson whiskey, but without the overpowering burn. Unlike some fruit-flavored whiskey products, Jameson Orange is not overly sweet or syrupy. The mouthfeel is similar to drinking regular old Jameson, but with a much more pleasant flavor. There is a slight burn at the end that you'd expect from drinking whiskey straight-up, but it's more of a bright citrus punch than pure alcohol. Essentially, Jameson has succeeded in making a whiskey that encapsulates all of the flavor notes of a traditional Old Fashioned without being too overpowering with its flavors. 

As suggested by the company, Jameson Orange pairs well with lemon-lime soda or cranberry juice (via PR Newswire). We tried it with some Sprite and a bit of orange juice, and it tasted like the adult version of an Orange Crush soda. FFT has several suggested recipes for the spirit, such as an Irish Cosmo featuring Jameson Orange, lime juice, triple sec, and cranberry juice. Overall, Jameson Orange is a pleasant surprise that puts a fresh spin on a time-honored classic. Thanks to its mild orange flavor, it would be a relatively easy sell for those who aren't whiskey aficionados, but are looking to try something different.