Jack's has quite a following of beer lovers in Israel (including yours truly), who wait for each new seasonal edition as the harbinger of a new year. It's a perfect winter beer: Dark, flavorful and boozy. These are the features you're looking for in a beer when the days are cold and the nights are long.
Since its first appearance, Jack's (as the name implies) was flavored and fortified with Jack Daniel's Tennessee Whiskey, usually oak chips which were first steeped in the whiskey and then placed in the beer for a two-week maturation period. The 2021 edition changed this by using whiskey chips from the local Milk & Honey Distillery in Tel Aviv. This year, Shapiro returned Jack's to the real Jack.
So what do we have?
This 2022 edition is a clear crimson brown, with no head to speak of. The aromas? Well, you don't even have to drink it; just inhaling the aromas is a pleasure. Oak wood is prominent, plus heated brown sugar, prune juice, vanilla, whiskey and dark malts. On the palate you get the full taste of rich malts, bourbon, sweetened oak, toffee and sugared dried fruits like prunes and raisins. The mouthfeel brings alcoholic warmth (alcohol by volume reaches 8.5%), a full body, and low carbonation but still tingly. There is a sweet aftertaste, but a lingering bitterness.
One beautiful beer.
P.S. I have some friends who like to compare the different annual releases of Jack's Winter Ale. Which years are maltier than others; fruitier, creamier, more boozy, etc. Some of them remember Jack's from ten years ago, God bless them. I can't tell you what I had for breakfast.
But I did write about four earlier versions of Jack's, and if you're interested, you can read them here by clicking on the year: