Aged Spirits  

Fahrenheit 173 - Whisky

"The king o' drinks, as I conceive it, Talisker, Isla or Glenlivit"   (R.L. Stevenson)

Six Irish whiskeys

 15 Jan 2014  

Green Spot (pot still, 40%):
The nose is oaky and nutty with notes of oak shavings, dessert wine, crème brûlée and orange candy. Splintered and a little vulgar. The palate is nicer: smooth, sweet and chewy with notes of sherry, lemon and orange marmalade. The finish is dry, oaky, spicy and nutty. All in all complex with lots of flavour but not entirely convincing. Difficult to grasp. (85 p)

Yellow Spot 12 y.o. (pot still, 46%):
Fragrant, fruity, fresh nose with notes of apricot, oak shavings, linseed oil and créme caramel. Also a hint of Trinidad rum. Complex but not entirely bal­anced. The palate is hot but with a drop of water it's light, sweet and smooth. Complex and nicely bal­anced with notes of custard and orange. De­velops oak and a note of marzipan. Very nice! The finish has a bit of oak and a note of vanilla but it short and dis­ap­point­ing. All in all it's uneven and a bit splintered. (Aged in bourbon, sherry and Malaga casks) (86 p)

Tullamore Dew 12 y.o. (blended, 40%):
Nice nose with oak, allspice, hay, citrus fruits and custard. The palate is bal­anced, smooth, sweet and very mild with notes of custard and honey. The finish has oak, mint and honey, also notes of apricot and peach (from the pot still component). All in all very smooth with an ex­cel­lent bal­ance. It's more-ish and goes down very easily! (87 p)

Redbreast Single Pot Still 12 y.o. (40%):
Big nose with peach, marzipan and oak. Very fruity palate with a fresh note of vanilla. Lighter than expected at first but grows richer as it de­velops oak and spices. The finish is fairly oaky with peach, marzipan and a note of mint. Lighter, cleaner and more easy drinking than the other ex­pres­sions of Redbreast. (87 p)

Powers John's Lane 12 y.o. (pot still, 46%):
Fresh, fruity and oaky nose with the typical fruity pot still character. A little spirity without water. With water it de­velops almonds, marzipan, custard and more oak. Also a note of bourbon. The palate is fresh and quite fruity (orange marmalade), also custard and honey. Oaky and spicy with a dry, rye-like note. The finish has marzipan and oak. A little peppery. All in all it has lots of flavour but it's not quite bal­anced. It's a little splintered but en­ter­tain­ing and rather nice. Best with a drop of water (too hot and spicy without it). It has more power (heh) than Redbreast and Green Spot. (87 p)

Midleton Barry Crockett Legacy (pot still, 46%):
The nose is quite oaky, dense and heavy but with nice notes of marzipan and peach. The palate is un­ex­pec­tedly light and smooth, subtle and bal­anced, with very nice notes of vanilla, peach, apricot and almonds. The finish is oaky with a note of pepper­mint. Very nice! All in all very nice and very more-ish. Not quite worth the price, though. (89 p)

I had high expectations of Green Spot and Yellow Spot but I was surprised that they didn't score higher than they did. It seems to me that the producers (Mitchell & Son, Dublin) try too hard with the aging in dif­fer­ent wood types - it makes the whisky unfo­cused and splintered and hides most of the pot still character.

On the other hand, the Tullamore 12 was a positive surprise! It's the cheapest of these whiskies and the best value. (I wasn't sure about including it here since it's a blended whisky and all the others are pot still, but it definitely held its own.)

—   o   —

More articles in this category:

Three new Swedish single malt whiskies
A review of Swedish single malts Box "Pioneer", Hven "Merak" and Smögen "Primör".

Five single malts from Cadenhead's
A review of Ardmore 1997, Balblair 1990, Glen Moray 1992, Strathisla 1987 and Strathmill 1995.

World whisky
A review of single malts from the Czech Republic, England, Germany, India, Sweden and Taiwain.

Four single malts and a single grain from Cadenhead's
A review of Girvan 1979 (single grain), Glencraig 1981, Glen Elgin 1991 (rum cask), Highland Park 1985 and Royal Lochnagar 1996 (rum cask).

Index of all articles in this category