The 19 Best Irish Whiskey Brands For 2021
Price. Formerly called Extra Special Old Highland Whiskey, the name was changed in 1909 to Johnnie Walker Black Label.It is an affordable whisky and one of the best cheap blended whisky you will find very tasty.. It combines flavors from all the producing areas of Scotland, meaning, a mixture of 30 of the best malt whiskeys with a minimum maturity of 12 years.
Best Under $100: Aberlour 16 Year Old Scotch Whisky. View On Drizly. One of the storied Speyside producers, Aberlour makes a number of delicious expressions mostly using two types of casks to season the spirit. The brand’s 16-year-old is no exception; it does its aging in both Spanish sherry butts and American oak.
We have analysed over 75.000 whisky tasting notes and 250.000 whisky ratings, only to present you the ten best light and smooth whiskies. Easy to drink and easy to love. Use our Whisky Finder to refine the search results , or to search for additional flavors or whisky characteristics.
Whether you’re going to sip them straight or want to mix up great whiskey cocktails, all are sure to tantalize your taste buds and offer a glimpse into what’s happening in the American whiskey scene. Read on to see our top picks for the best American whiskeys on the market.
Easy Sipping And Even Easier On The Wallet
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The Irish invented whiskey! as every Irish whiskey brand ambassador and bartender has told me in the last few years.
And its true. Plus, Irish whiskey is the fastest growing spirits category in the world, and these are all really fun facts to know and tell when youre imbibing on St. Patricks Day which, thanks to falling on a Sunday, pretty much means youll be drinking Irish style the entire weekend, even in non-Irish bars.
Which is fine: Irish whiskey is a smooth sipper and extremely versatile in cocktails. And, bonus, theres a lot to love if youre working within a budget. So while wed love to sip on Knappogue Castle 16 or Red Spot, your St. Patricks Day drinking certainly wont suffer with one of these 10 extremely affordable Irish tipples all of which weve personally tried and approved.
Sláinte, as the Irish say. Which means health, and;is;the local way of saying cheers and take care of yourself this Sunday.
West Cork Bourbon CaskMatured in first-fill bourbon casks, this young independent distiller crafts an approachable spirit that our office easily polished off over a few late-night work sessions.
Kilbeggan Single GrainHailing from Irelands oldest licensed distillery, this complex Irish whiskey is double-distilled and aged in ex-bourbon and fortified wine barrels.
Jameson Bow Street 18 Year Old 240
Jameson Bow Street 18 Year Old Irish whiskey is a blend between a rare pot still whiskey and an Irish grain whiskey, which are both produced by the Jameson Midleton distillery in County Cork.
After 18 years of ageing, these two whiskies are combined together and finished off back in the original Jameson distillery on Bow Street in Dublin.Bow Street 18 is Jamesons rarest release, and it is only bottled once per year. This whiskey is bottled at cask strength and is 55.3% ABV.Jameson 18 Year Old was awarded best Irish blended whiskey of the year in 2018 and then again in 2019.
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The Tyrconnell Port Cask Finish
BEST PORT CASK FINISH
The Tyrconnell is a historic brand that has been revitalized in recent years by its parent company Beam Suntory. The whiskey, distilled at the Cooley distillery, is aged for nearly a decade in ex-bourbon barrels before spending a final six to eight months in port pipes from the Duoro Valley in Portugal. This final step layers the vanilla and cream base flavors of the palate with notes of dark fruit, spice, and citrus. Try sipping this neat on a cool night to warm yourself up from the inside out.
And Madness Single Pot Still 46%
Theres nothing unusual about the casks used to mature this whiskey sherry and bourbon but the French chestnut used to finish it is certainly a rarity. Its a richly fruity drink, with stewed apple and booze-soaked raisins in the mix, all dusted with vanilla sugar. Let it swirl around in your mouth and you will experience enlivening tiny prickles of spice before some satisfying tannic wood flavours reveal themselves at the finish. An outstanding whiskey.
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Two Stacks The Blenders Cut Cask Strength
Though common in American whiskey, cask strength releases are a rarity on the Emerald Isle but this whiskey makes a compelling case that there should be more of them. Comprising a complex blend of grain, pot still, double malt, and peated malt whiskeys, the nose leads with banana, toffee, and caramel aromas, and a subtle puff of smoke. The palate is charged and spicy, with a rich fruit core. Average price: $60.
Writers Tears Copper Pot Irish Whiskey
Writers Tears Copper Pot Irish Whiskey is an easy-drinking blend of pot still and single malt, which is relatively uncommon in the category. The award-winning spirit sports a bright amber color, complete with a range of appealing aromas, a round body and a rich flavor. All of these elements combined makes it a great go-to choice or easy drinker for any newcomer to the world of whiskey. Taste-wise, this spirit features hints of green apple, caramel, ginger and vanilla all culminating in a fruity finish. Enjoy it neat, mixed or as part of a flavor-filled cocktail.
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What Is Irish Whiskey Made From
Barley is commonly used to produce a classic style of Irish whiskey. Many distilleries use unmalted barley, some incorporate a portion of malted barley or other cereal grains, and single malt Irish whiskey is made entirely of malted barley. Grain Irish whiskey has a lighter flavor and is distilled from other cereal grains, such as corn or wheat, using column stills. Its also often used when blending Irish whiskey after aging. Single grain Irish whiskey uses just one type of grain.
Irish Whiskey Has A Long History
Whiskeys from around the world can trace their heritage to Ireland . The process of distilling the spirit may have been transferred from Ireland to Scotland thanks to traveling monks. According to Master of Malt, these monks were producing something called uisce beatha, which evolved into usquebaugh and then, finally, whisky .
For most of the hundreds of years that both Ireland and Scotland have been producing whiskey, the Irish product was considered superior. Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, Irish whiskey was exported around the world, and people quickly developed a taste for the warm flavors produced using the traditional pot still distillation. By 1800, there were more than 1,000 distilleries in Ireland, and Jameson and Power had already established their names as top producers. During this time, the extra e was added to whiskey from Ireland in order to set the liquor apart from competitors. By the end of the 19th century, Irish distillers accounted for 70% of the world whiskey market, according to Forbes.;
However, the industry suffered in the years ahead. In the 20th century, producers faced religious abstinence campaigns in Ireland and abroad, two world wars, the Easter Rising, the Irish Civil War, the Great Depression, American Prohibition, and trade wars between Ireland and the United Kingdom.
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Best Splurge: Knappogue Castle 16 Year Single Malt
Region: Ireland | ABV: 40% | Tasting Notes: Honey, Toasted Nuts, Dried Fruit
Aged for a minimum of 14 years in bourbon barrels and finished in Oloroso sherry casks , this rarified Irish whiskey is luxury in a glass.
With apricots, honey, and toasted nuts on the nose, it shows up soft and velvety on the palate with a long, lingering finish, and it certainly deserves to be enjoyed straight. Rivaling some of the top bourbons and Japanese whiskeys in quality, this is the bottle you break out after a successful dinner party. Plus, at around $100 , its a splurge you can justify.
The Best Irish Whiskey For Every Budget
Pretty self-explanatory, Irish whiskey is whiskey thats made in any part of Ireland, including both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Irish whiskey must contain some amount of malted barley but may include other unmalted cereal grains. There are four main types of whiskey, although the best Irish whiskey can come from any of these types. ;
Malt is made using 100 percent malted barley and is distilled in pot stills. Pot Still must contain a minimum of 30 percent malted and 30 percent unmalted barley, and up to 5 percent of other grains. Its also distilled in pot stills. Grain Irish whiskey is made with no more than 30 percent malted barley and can include any other combination of grains. Its distilled in column stills. Finally, blended Irish whiskey is when any two of the above styles are combined.;
Whiskey is either mashed, fermented, or distilled and must not exceed 94.8 percent ABV . Its matured in wooden casks for a minimum of three years, though its often more. No additives are allowed, other than water and caramel coloring. While many different flavors and tasting notes exist, Irish whiskey can often be identified by its light, fruity flavor profile and the signature oaky, caramel notes that come from the aging process.;
The whiskey you choose will depend on how you plan to use it. For example, less expensive whiskeys are best for whiskey cocktails, while pricier ones should often be sipped instead.
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How Is Irish Whiskey Different From Scotch
Scotland and Ireland two countries with long and proud histories, exemplified in many ways by Scotch and Irish whiskeys. But which one is better? How are they different, and how are they similar? We found out.
Irish whiskey must be made in Ireland, and Scotch whiskey must be made in Scotland. So theres one similarity between the two whiskeys.
Both Irish whiskey and Scotch are made with water and barley. With Scotch, the barley is allowed to sprout before it is dried with peat moss smoke, giving the spirit a stronger aroma and taste. Irish whiskey is more neutral in flavor and aroma.
Irish whiskey contains alcohol continually distilled from barley and other grains. Many Irish whiskeys are distilled three times , while Scotch is distilled only twice . Some say this process contributes to the stronger flavor and aroma of Scotch.
Irish whiskey must age for at least three years, while Scotch is aged for two. Both typically use a wooden cask for aging.
Jj Corey Irish Whiskey: The Gael
This is a delightful blend of three single malts aged 11, 15, and 26 yearsplus a seven-year grain from the Chapel Gate Whiskey company McCoy says. Theres something special about this because its pure and simple, especially when compared to the later releases. The Flintlock 16 Year obviously has more age to it, and the Battalion has a bit too much fruit and smoke due to the tequila and mezcal barrels, so the Gael release really hits a sweet spot.
Chapel Gate Whiskeys mission is to resurrect the art of Irish whiskey bonding. And The Gael is the … first expression made, with only 7,500 bottles.
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Kilbeggan Single Pot Still
Kilbeggan includes 2.5 percent oats in the mash bill for this single pot still whiskey. The influence of the cereal is notable, with wafts of warm oatmeal rising from the glass before a rich, creamy mouthfeel. With added aromas of banana chips, hazelnuts, and raisins, and an earthy streak to the palate, this Irish whiskey promises to convert Scotch drinkers. Average price: $43.
Looking To Treat Yourself Or Just Curious Here Are The Top Five Most Expensive Irish Whiskies You Can Get On The Island
Ireland is a country that has a long history with alcohol. If you ask any American or non-Irish person what they know about Ireland, I am sure drinking a lot of alcohol or some sort of alcoholic beverage, like whiskey, will be one of the first things out of their mouth.
As a result, it is no surprise that Irish whiskey is now the fastest-growing spirits category Irish whiskey is being exported all over the world.I am sure you are probably already familiar with some Irish whiskies such as Powers or Jameson, but here are five of the most expensive Irish whiskies which you might not have heard of.
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Connemara Peated Single Malt Richly Peat
Another top contender for the best Irish whiskeys in Ireland is Connemara Peated Single Malt. Usually, a peat flavour to a whiskey is associated with scotch, but this is not always the case. Its a mild not a heavy whiskey.
The initial flavour experienced is that of the peat, but then the taste buds are softly caressed by the lingering malt.
Peat whiskeys are not for everyone, but if youre looking for a well-balanced, smooth Irish whiskey, well, this may be the one for you.
The 30 Best Irish Whiskeys For 2021
Irish Whiskey and How You Can Get the Best Out of It. This is where the real fun starts, friends. If you are new to the whiskey universe, you must have heard some experts recommend watering down your Irish whiskey before you start drinking it. It is, of course, an excellent idea.
THE BEST Irish whiskeys in the world have been toasted at the annual 2019 Irish Whiskey Awards. Irish whiskey is enjoying something of a moment, with no fewer than 35 different and highly distinctive distilleries operating across the Emerald Isle.
The majority of growth within the Irish whiskey category is led by Irish Distillers Pernod Ricards Jameson, which soared by 4.1% in 2012, but a host of other brands are now clipping at its heels.
Key to remember is that you have Scotch whisky and Irish whiskey outside of these two nations, bottlers can decide themselves whether theyre keeping or dropping the e. Whisky is, more often than not, best enjoyed neat. But its a matter of preference; sometimes you need a neat Islay dram after a long day, sometimes you want to enjoy a long drink of Irish malt over ice.
A bunch of Irish whiskeys fly under the mainstream whiskey radar. Here are some of the best Irish whiskeys you wont see in other Irish bars. Theres more to Irish whiskey than Jameson.
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Top 10 Best Irish Whiskeys
Looking for a new Irish whiskey to try? These ten recently released whiskeys have been reviewed the best by users of the Whisky Suggest App . You can never be wrong with any of these whiskeys!Wondering what your personalized top 10 looks like? Download the Whisky Suggest app on Android or iOS, rate and review 10 whiskeys, and presto! You’ll have recommendations tailored to your tastes so you can sip confidently, sláinte!</br />;</br />-> Ready to order? Try ReserveBar , The Whisky Exchange or Master of Malt . Or for more shops.</br />
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In order to select this list of whiskeys, there were a few things I looked at. Given my occupation as a cocktail bartender, it was important to look at the category broadly as well as specifically, Auth says. A few considerations were top of mind: How well does it mix with other spirits? How well does this mix with ingredients such as various juices and syrups? What is best to drink neat? What is most cost effective but still a quality product? These questions along with several others helped me put together this list of my favorite Irish whiskeys on the market.;
And with all the innovations going on in the category, its difficult to narrow everything down to a list of less than 20. But Auth leans towards single pot stills and nearly every expression that has spent time in a sherry cask: I absolutely love Irish whiskeys with finishes. They can be an excellent choice for many reasons but;personally, I really enjoy the diversity they can bring. Nowadays, many distillers are finishing in casks such as rum, Cognac, Oloroso sherry, and beerall of which bring additional qualities to each of the whiskeys and with that an added level of complexity.
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Writers Tears Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Copper pot stills are the distillation tool of choice for authentic Irish whiskeys. As opposed to the now-popular column stills, copper pots retain more of the aromatics and oily character of the grains used for making whiskey. Theyre also trickier to produce a consistently delicious spirit from which makes Writers Tears Pot Still whiskey all the more impressive.;
On the nose, this whiskey is fresh, green and floral. On first sip, youll notice a distinct but gentle gingerbread spice. And on its long and developing finish, a hint of charred wood and chocolate. I would sip this whiskey neat, or with a few drops of spring water.
Redbreast 15 Year Old
Redbreast 15 Year Old grabbed a Master medal in the Single Pot Still Ultra Premium round for its big and rich character, which offered great texture and rancio.
Originally released as a limited edition offering, the 15-year-old is now part of the brands permanent range. It is said to have a more mellow taste than its younger sibling, Redbreast 12 Year Old.
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