Jack Daniel's admits famous recipe created by slave

  • 28/06/2016
Jack Daniel's
Jack Daniel's

The recipe for the world's top-selling American whiskey was created by a slave, Jack Daniel's has finally admitted.

For 150 years, the Tennessee whiskey distillery gave credit to Lutheran preacher Dan Call for the recipe, but has now come clean with the truth that it was actually his slave, Nearis Green, who provided the expertise.

At the time Jack Daniel's was created, the US was ravaged by the horrors of slavery, and distilleries were owned by white businessmen, but the whiskey work itself was carried out by slaves.

Mr Green's role in the legendary whiskey's creation had been suspected, but not officially recorded. However, Jack Daniel's global brand director, Phil Epps, says there had been "no conscious decision" to excise Mr Green's contribution from history.

This year is the 150th anniversary of Jack Daniel's. The company started researching its various origin stories in the lead-up to the milestone and has decided that the case for Mr Green's contribution was persuasive and should be told.

"As we dug into it, we realised it was something that we could be proud of," Mr Epps told The New York Times.

The Green story has become an optional part of the Jack Daniel's distillery tour, left to the tour guide's discretion, and the company is still considering whether it will flesh out the story in new displays at its visitor centre.