Or Asked Another Way Do The Oats Make The Irish Whiskey
You would be forgiven for thinking Irish whiskey comes only in shot form. Most of us know it as little more than a light, blended whiskey, and few of us can name an Irish whiskey that isnt Jameson, Powers or Bushmills. Its no wonder until a decade ago, only three distilleries in Ireland made every whiskey on the shelf. But at the height of Irelands distilling history, 88 licensed distilleries were in operation, producing several styles. The quintessential Irish style is known as single pot still whiskey. Made with a mix of malted and unmalted barley, it was a rich and smooth spirit that helped make Irish whiskey the largest global spirits category of the 19th century. The unmalted or green barley gave the whiskey a spicy bite and a creamy texture. With brands like Redbreast and Green Spot, that style is now making a well-deserved comeback.
The Emerald 1865 from Ransom Spirits in Oregon is a straight American whiskey distilled from a mix of mostly malted and some unmalted barley, rye and oats. Its inspired by Irish mash bills of yore, distilled in direct-fire copper pot stills. According to Ransom owner and distiller Tad Seestedt, Oats bring a distinctive aromatic to the whiskey, reminiscent of the oatmeal we have for breakfast. They also add a significant amount of palate weight and viscosity to the mouth.
My best guess would be that Irish whiskeys made before the turn of the 20th century were heavier-bodied, richer and more complex than the ones of today.
Wd Oconnell Px18 Cask Strength Review
Color: Medium-pale maize.
On the nose: An immediate note of ripe Red Delicious apple, a touch of cinnamon sugar, and some freshly-baked sugar cookie aromas provide a warm welcome. The apple notes transition to the green Granny Smith variety, as sweetly spicy notes of nutmeg creep in. With time, some more brooding notes of embers and sandstone make themselves evident.
In the mouth: Upfront, this presents a charming marriage of warmly woody notes and a tart fruitiness. Theres a drying, tannic feel to this as it moves toward the midpalate, where the fruit pivots to a citric bite and the mouthfeel takes on an almost effervescent texture. The finish has an unmistakable and surprising note of peanut butter a radiant heat combines with more of the wood notes to create a drying sensation across the roof of the mouth.
The Best Premium Irish Whiskey For An Elevated Experience
These may cost more than youre used to, or be hard to find. But theyre worth it.
Triple-distilled from malted barley, dried over peat fires and matured in both bourbon and sauternes French wine casks, Blackpitts is a deceptively light-colored tipple that brings together a fruitiness, butterscotch and smoke. Its like a campfire dessert.
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Common Misconceptions About Irish Whiskey
I hear two major misconceptions commonly bandied about, by bartenders, spirits retailers, and consumers alike. Let’s lay these to rest.
The Flavors Of Irish Whiskey
Many Irish whiskeys are blended, as blending tends to yield the most delicious and complex juice. By law, Irish whiskey can be made using two or more of the 3 different types of Irish whiskey single malt, single pot still or grain whiskeys and are by far the most common.
With Slane, the Triple Casked maturation system lends to its bold and decidedly smooth, complex and robust flavor, with a rich toffee color and notes of caramel, toasted oats, vanilla, butterscotch, raisin and spice.
Irish Whiskeys as a whole are often smooth and fruity, many being pot stilled, says Burke. In the beautiful Boyne Valley in Ireland, you can find the Village of Slane where Slane Whiskey is made. Through this process, you can find notes of vanilla, clove, banana, and a little bit of spice. Its very flavorful whiskey.
Warns Nevin-Gattle: Dont let Slanes 80 proof fool you. This Irish whiskey is full of flavor. From the flavors of the vanilla in the new-charred American oak to the stone fruit notes in the seasoned casks, it is rounded out with raisin and spice in the Oloroso sherry casks.
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Knappogue Castle 12 Years Old Chateau Pichon Baron Finish
This is an extremely limited edition release less than 1100 bottles made it to the U.S. The spirit spends 12 years in ex-bourbon barrels, then an additional 10 months in Pichon barrels from Bordeaux. It has a sweet, light and juicy taste, while the finish is more the traditional oakey/vanilla/spice profile youd expect.
The Future Of Irish Whiskey
From humble beginnings Irish whiskey became one of the countrys greatest exports in the fledgling modern world. During a 19th century peak, when Dublin was the centre of all things Irish whiskey, the country produced 10 million gallons of whiskey per year and had over 30 working distilleries up and down the country!
Unfortunately that incredible growth couldnt be maintained. Throughout much of the 20th century popularity and demand for the drink diminished and at one point the country produced less than 500,000 gallons a year. A far cry from the glory days!
This nadir lead to countless closures and by the 1980s Ireland had just 3 working distilleries left.
Thankfully a resurgence, from 1990 onwards, driven by worldwide interest has resulted in another boom and constant year on year growth of 15-20%! Nowadays the Emerald Isle has 18 licensed distilleries and 16 more due to open in the near future!
The future of Irish whiskey is bright and we certainly think thats a good excuse for a drink!
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History Of Irish Whiskey
The production of whiskey in Ireland dates back centuries. Historical records are unclear, but most whiskey writers seem to accept that Irish missionary monks picked up the technique of distillation in the Middle East about 800-1000 years ago and brought it home to their island. What’s unclear is whether they then spread that technology to Scotland, or whether the Scots picked it up from mainland Europe, via Scandanavia and Russia.
The question of who invented whisky may never be solved, but one thing that’s clear is that in 1608 the Bushmills distillery, in what is now Northern Ireland, had a license from the British Crown to distill whiskey. Bushmills says that makes its distillery the world’s oldest whiskey distillery, and I can’t see any reason to dispute that claim.
At the dawn of the 20th century, the Irish whiskey industry was thriving. By 1900, Irish whiskey was the leading spirit in Great Britain. By 1919, Jameson was one of the top-selling whiskey brands in the United States. Irish whiskey enjoyed the support of London exporters, who carried it worldwide, providing the industry with a thriving global market.
Today, however, only four distilleries remain, and Irish whiskey is vastly overpowered in the global marketplace by Scotch and, to a lesser extent, bourbon. What happened to this proud tradition?
Its True Whiskey Originated In Ireland
There has long been dispute about where whiskey originated. It is widely accepted that it was from Celtic origin but was it the Scots or the Irish?
When you talk to the Irish they will tell long stories of Irish Christian monks who travelled far and wide picking up the trade of distillation from Arabia around 500-600AD. They mastered the art of distilling grain and water on their return to Ireland. Sure didnt the Irish need a hard liqueur to protect them from the harsh raw Atlantic gales!
Ah, but when you talk to the Scots, well, they tell you of the hard written evidence that proves whiskey was in distillation in 1494. There is a record on the Exchequer Rolls of eight bolls of malt to Friar John Cor wherewith to make aqua vitae. Well you just cant dispute that fact.
Alas, to Scottish dismay there is new evidence to suggest that indeed the Irish were distilling Irish whiskey before Friar John. According to Barry Walsh, an author writing for the Whiskey Magazine, tanned reindeer skin with carved writing dating back to pre-Christian times has been discovered along the River Liffey during some excavation works.
When translated it states that a man called Pah-Dee Resumed heating the murky bubbly mixture of grain and water, and collected a fiery liquid through worm and reed pipe. Tastes bad. Made me dizzy and sick and I had to lie down and continues to refer to it as the fire water.
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List Of Whisky Brands
This is a list of whisky brands arranged by country of origin and style. Whisky is a type of distilled alcoholic beverage made from fermentedgrainmash. Different grains are used for different varieties, including barley, malted barley, rye, malted rye, wheat, and corn. Whisky is typically aged in wooden casks, made generally of charred white oak.
Start Of Licensed Distillation
In 1608, King James I granted a licence to Sir Thomas Phillips, a landowner in Bushmills, County Antrim. It is through this licence that the Old Bushmills Distillery lays claim to being the oldest surviving grant of licence to distil in the world. However, the current Bushmills distillery and company was not registered to trade until 1784 which allows the Kilbeggan Distillery , founded by the McManus family in Kilbeggan, County Westmeath, which has been licensed and distilling since 1757 to lay claim to the title of the oldest licensed distillery in Ireland. Kilbeggan also has what is believed to be the oldest operational copper pot still in the world, over 250 years old.
From a regulatory perspective, the introduction of the Act is a historical milestone as it provides a clear distinction between licit and illicit whiskey distillation in Ireland. For many years following its introduction, whiskey produced by registered distillers was known as “parliament whiskey”, while that produced by illicit producers was, and still is referred to as Poitín, a Gaelic term meaning “small pot” in reference to the small pot stills used by the illicit distillers. However, although traditionally the product of illicit production, many legal varieties of Poitín have come to market in recent years.
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Emerald Isle Collectible Whiskey Set
Wanna try the oldest triple-distilled Irish whiskey in the world? Itll cost you. The Craft Irish Whiskey Co. collaborated with Fabergé on this seven-piece custom-made whiskey set which celebrates the Seven Wonders of Ireland. Each set contains features two bottles of 30-year-old Irish whiskey, two exclusive creations from Fabergé, a humidor with two Cohiba Siglo VI Grand Reserva cigars, a gold-plated cigar cutter, gold plated water pipette, pure obsidian whiskey stones, a hip flask with a sample of the Emerald Isle whiskey, a carafe filled with Irish spring water from the same region where the whiskey was made. Youll only be able to get these at private auctions throughout the year .
Redbreast Aged 12 Years Cask Strength Review
Color: Medium-pale gold.
On the nose: A rich but elegant balance of lusciously ripe fruit and fresh floral scents is the initial impression. Persimmon and Bosc pear meet the creamy and flowery perfume aroma of hand soap. Theres a roasty note of mocha here, as well as an herbaceous accent of eucalyptus. With time in the glass, I sense the emergence of the grainy smell of barley, which starts low in a very earthy register before ascending the tonal scale up to the aromatic heights of new distilled spirit.
In the mouth: Initially, theres a deliciously sweet entrance of candied citrus fruit. Moving toward the center of the mouth, that citrus zest combines with more woody, earthy, and malty flavors in an intriguing mélange. The fruit subsides at the top of the tongue, leaving the barley to sing out momentarily as the heat blooms in a radiant cloud, the first textural indication of the high bottling strength. Theres a resurgence of the herbal eucalyptus note as this moves toward the finish, where the a sour citrus reemerges combined with spice, in a manner reminiscent of the peppery bite of pink grapefruit. The earthy and roasty notes linger longest, spreading out in an off-bitter and toasty wave around the periphery of the mouth as the whiskey leaves a tingle on the inside of the lips.
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Theres An Option For Every St Patricks Day Drinker
I used to believe Irish whiskey was a gateway whisky. Its a smooth sipper. Its relatively inexpensive or at least the stuff I was drinking was and it goes great in cocktails, particularly an Irish coffee.
But I never gave the category enough credit, even though the Irish invented whiskey and a NYC bar pretty much devoted to the tipple and walking distance from my apartment kept winning Worlds Best Bar awards.
Thankfully, I, along with the rest of the country, have caught up. According to the Distilled Spirits Council, U.S. consumer interest in the Irish Whiskey category is surging, and not just for the affordable stuff. Since 2002, high-end premium and super premium Irish whiskey grew at 1,007 percent and 8,728 percent, respectively. And in 2020, more than five million 9-liter cases of Irish whiskey were sold in the United States, generating $1.1 billion in revenue for distillers.
Over a century on from the start of Prohibition, it is worth remembering that Ireland was once the largest supplier of whiskey for the U.S., explains William Lavelle, head of the Irish Whiskey Association . And now, once again, American consumers are flocking to discover the depth and diversity of Irish whiskey.
So below, lessons learned from the past few years of truly diving into this fascinating spirit.
Slane Irish Whiskey $3499 At Drizzly
Slane Irish whiskey uses three different types of casks: Virgin, seasoned, and sherry. For this reason, it complements other spirits when crafting cocktails. Well balanced, clean, yet full of character, says a 5-star Drizzly reviewer. Perfect for cocktails or sipping. Distilled in the iconic city of Slane, Ireland, also known as the Rock n Roll Capital of Ireland, the triple-casked whiskey is a legacy label in every liquor store.
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Tullamore Dew 15 Year Old Trilogy Small Batch Irish Whiskey $9599 At Caskers
Heres a limited-edition Tullamore DEW 15 Year Old Trilogy Small Batch Irish Whiskey that is made from three different grains, including malted barley, unmalted barley and corn. This trilogy of Irish whiskey has a rich aroma filled with tropical fruits, mixed nuts, tannins, and oaks. The palate then transitions to flavors of chocolate fudge and whipped cream, which makes this blended Irish whiskey a good choice for after-dinner drinks.
Irish Whiskey Vs Scotch
Irish whiskey and Scotch whisky are the oldest styles of the dark distilled spirit. Which was created first is a matter of historical debate. The most obvious difference is that Irish whiskey is always spelled with an “e” in the word “whiskey” scotch always uses the spelling “whisky.”
In terms of production, the two styles have customary practices that generally characterize the style. However, there are whiskeys that borrow practices of the other, which can lead to confusion. Generally, both are fermented with barleyscotch is often malted and Irish whiskey largely unmaltedand the blended whiskey of either may include grain whiskey. Irish whiskey is typically triple-distilled while scotch is often distilled only twice. Both styles include blended and single malt whiskeys, though scotch is more famous for the latter. It’s the peaty smokiness in scotch and the smoothness of Irish whiskey that typically distinguish the two. The catch is that there are peated and double-distilled Irish whiskeys as well as nonpeated and triple-distilled scotch whiskys.
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Quiet Man 8 Year Single Malt Irish Whiskey $4999 At Winecom
Founded by Ciaran Mulgrew in the year of 1983, The Quiet Man 8 Year Single Malt Irish Whiskey has a golden color in the glass and exceptional notes of vanilla, oak and honey. The scent of this Irish whiskey originated in Derry, Ireland evokes fresh-cut apple and pear fragrances. Finished in first-fill Bourbon barrels, this proof 80 award-winning labels is known for its smooth textures and complex flavors.
Get To Know This Approachable Easy
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Liquor / Chloe Jeong
Unburdened by the nerdery that surrounds bourbon, without the regional knowledge requirements of scotch and generally more affordable than both categories, Irish whiskey is an easy-drinking spirit perfect for both whiskey beginners and experts alike.
Generally known as a lighter whiskey without heavy notes of smoke or oaky vanilla flavors, there is still a wide range of Irish whiskeys to be sampled and enjoyed. Some are more suited for cocktailing, others can be sipped solo just as you might a fine scotch or bourbon. And, lucky for us, the category just keeps growing and becoming more available in the U.S. Only a few years ago, the Irish whiskey section of your liquor store may have been limited to just three or four big brands. But now, its positively overflowing with bottles marked with different age statements and barrel finishes. Of course, theres always space on the bar for the old standbys. According to our research, here are some of the top Irish whiskeys to drink right now.
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