5 Notable Irish Whiskeys
Inspired by the enormous revival of the Scottish whisky industry, the Irish have been aggressively expanding the offerings from their distilleries with impressive results. Although Scotland sustains approximately 90 distilleries, Ireland has only four (each produces a number of different whiskeys). Economic difficulties in the last few centuries have led to a great number of mergers and closures. The signature difference is that Irish whiskey is distilled three times rather than the two in Scotland, the claim being that it makes for a smoother, “cleaner” product.
Here is a closer look at five of our favorites:
Jameson—The classic blended Irish whiskey from the Old Midleton Distillery, just outside of Cork. It tastes of barley, a hint of cocoa and a dash of honey.
Greenore 6-Year-Old—A single grain whiskey, meaning that it is made from the grain-based spirits of a single distillery. Ample caramel flavor with a bit of apple and pear.
Redbreast 12-Year-Old—One of only two pure pot-still whiskies produced in Ireland. Fruity sweetness that resolves into a finish with a hint of spice.
Bushmills 10-Year-Old—A lovely single malt made in Northern Ireland. Initial engaging hints of fruitiness tinged with cocoa. The finish is smooth toffee.
Knappogue Castle—This is one of the finest single malts from Ireland. Appealing hint of spice, with a finish of oak carrying a slight bitterness.