Blood and Whiskey: The Life and Times of Jack Daniel
Peter KrassISBN: 0471273929; 9780471273929;
The author traces the Daniel family lineage from Scotland and Ireland to rural Tennessee, and Jasper “Jack” Newton Daniel’s rise from hardscrabble youth to a dandy gent with a love of horses, fine clothes and women, a colleague of J.P. Morgan’s and one of the most famous spirits producers in the world. Orphaned at 15, Jack discovered a whiskey still on the property of his longtime neighbor and new guardian, Dan Call, and his interest in distilling booze was born. Krass (Carnegie) details the early business partnership between Call and Daniel and their eventual split, as Call forces himself to choose between preaching and making whiskey. “One Call [descendant] wished he’d given up preaching instead because the Jack Daniel Distillery was eventually worth tens of millions of dollars,” Krass writes. While Krass’s research is ample, the book often gets bogged down in historical minutiae, and at times the reader wishes for a more charismatic star of the show than the somewhat dour Daniel....