Does anyone want a bottle of Yukon Jack? Because I really, really don’t.
Despite my best efforts to be open-minded and to find ways to enjoy it, this
is one bottle of booze I just can’t like.
A Canadian liqueur, Yukon Jack’s marketing is based on an invocation of
rugged, wintery Canadianness. Its name is a reference to Jack McQuesten, a
pioneer of Alaska and the Yukon. The bottle’s label proclaims Yukon Jack to
be the “Black Sheep of Canadian Liquors,” and it features a cold-looking man
dressed up in furs. While I’m sure the hoary old explorer Jack McQuesten is
to be admired, I can’t say the same for his namesake liqueur.
The first way Yukon Jack falls short is in trailblazing. Its whiskey and
honey combination is nothing out of the ordinary; people have been adding
honey to whiskey for ages. The flavour combination does promise to be a good
one, but in Yukon Jack it’s a letdown. Letdown might actually be an
understatement. The whiskey’s flavour contribution is a nail-polish-remover
punch that’s quickly followed by an overpoweringly sweet honeyed
While the flavour might be tough on your tastebuds, it’s not tough in a manly
explorer way. Yukon Jack’s marketing refers to cold nights, log cabins and
open fires, but take a whiff of its scent and its first impression is of
creamsicley orange. This doesn’t exactly scream toughness, muscled
determination or the glinty stare of a man ready for adventure. It’s more
ponytails and popsicles, except with a rubbing alcohol tang.
While it’s clear that I don’t like this stuff, I must admit that I might have
been biased by what turned up when I started looking for recipes that use
Yukon Jack. Plugged into a drinks site, Yukon Jack pulls up names that do
nothing to convince me that it tastes good. Of course, if you want to drink
something called “Sex on My Face,” we’re probably not going to see eye-to-eye
anyway. In fact, I’m not even going to share the recipe for that with you.
Look it up if you must, but do it at your own risk. Maybe you should go for a
“Hairy Ass” instead. Or there’s the “Bloody Tampon.” Sorry. But seriously,
drinks like this make it clear that Yukon Jack is probably not something you
should be ingesting. I’m pretty sure there’s some serious tastebud-damage
One thing this liqueur does do is warm you up. At 40-percent alcohol content,
you’re definitely getting some bang. We have been hit with all kinds of cold
lately. If the weather’s getting you down, Yukon Jack will at least be a
distraction. Make your mouth miserable instead. If you’re drinking Yukon Jack
straight in the middle of –30 C weather, maybe its flavour doesn’t
matter anymore. Thinking of it like this explains its sickly-sweet flavour. A
spoonful of sugar, right? V