This one happened to be the latest release of the revered Midleton Very Rare series – the 2019 bottle.
I missed out on John Wilson’s – the Irish Times wine guru – introduction and only arrived as Brian Nation – Head Distiller at Midleton Distillery – led out the first whiskey of the evening.
Barry Crockett Legacy, Single Pot Still, 46%
Like meeting an old friend again – this single pot stills greets you with a warm embrace – cheers you with it’s complex palate and entertains you with a gorgeous oak spiciness.
Next up came a special treat.
Midleton Single Cask, Single Pot Still, 56%
Drawn from a 21 year old virgin oak cask resting at Midleton – yours for a starting price of only €80,000 – this wasn’t a shy whiskey.
Rich & warm woody oak tannins with a hint of spice – I could have nosed this beauty all night long.
The palate started off flavoursome & smooth – before the strength & gradually drying tannic spice made it’s presence felt – which left my mouth reeling.
Not for the faint hearted.
And then the finale.
Midleton Very Rare, 2019, Blend, 40%
A blend of up to 226 barrels of grain & single pot still aged from 13 to 34 years carefully put together by Brian Nation himself.
A surprisingly fruity nose – reminded me of wine gums, the dark ones especially.
A silky smooth palate tempered by a lovely gentle sweet grain mixed in with dry oaky tannins – which didn’t overpower – allowing a cornucopia of flavour to flow around the mouth with depth & character in abundance.
A perfectly balanced blend showcasing the rich diversity & age range of the casks available at Midleton Distillery.
A joy to behold.
A big thank you to all the team at Sonny Molloy’s & Midleton Distillery for the warm hospitality – fabulous whiskey – tasty canapés and highly enjoyable evening.
A few years ago you’d be hard pushed to find an Irish Craft Beer – let alone one aged in Irish Whiskey Barrels – yet this growing category continues to expand.
Western Herd – based in County Clare – recently re-released their Dolmen Irish Whiskey Stout. I was lucky enough to secure a sample.
Western Herd also release a wide range of craft beers – best sampled at one of their bars – like I did at McHugh’s in Ennis – or perhaps Flanagan’s in Lahinch is more your style?
You can always top it off with a glass of Chapel Gate’s JJ Corry Whiskey – the source of the barrels that enhance the flavour of this stout. ‘Hon The Banner’ certainly went down well with me!
Using the branded tasting glass provided – I poured myself a Dolmen.
A gorgeously dark stout with a lively head.
Aromas of coffee, malt & burnt molasses. Mrs Whiskey also discerned blackcurrant & chocolate. Very inviting.
I must admit to finding the stout a bit too gassy for my palate. My preference is for a creamy flatness – but there’s a good combination of flavours within. The coffee was still present, initially the sweet honey malt made itself known, then faded slowly into quite a light feeling stout which belied the 7.6% ABV.
Now this isn’t a beer to swig down. It’s one to be savoured & sipped – which is how I approached it over the course of an hour or so.
By then the ‘fizz’ I’m not a fan of had dissipated. The stout tasted more fuller bodied with darker, treacly notes coming through – much to my satisfaction.
The SuperValu grocery store chain announced a new exclusive release of Powers Single Cask, Single Pot Still Whiskeys at a recent event in the NCAD (National College of Art and Design) building in Dublin recently.
The NCAD is housed on the former site of John’s Lane Distillery – the ‘spiritual’ home of Powers Whiskey – and some of the original buildings – and pot stills – are still in situ.
Arriving a little late to the proceedings I happily entered just as Ger Garland – Irish Distillers Whiskey Ambassador – presented the 2 Single Cask releases – Cask 147620 & Cask 104072 – to the gathered audience.
Both are 10 year old single pot stills offered at 46% and are matured in ex-bourbon casks – both 1st fill and 2nd fill casks are used.
I found both of them classic Powers Whiskey.
Warming vanilla & caramel on the nose. A honeyed creamy palate followed by that drying peppery spice I love so much.
Very enjoyable indeed!
The 2 offerings did differ – rather subtly in my estimation – although others picked out more marked divergencies than me.
The consensus seemed to be on Cask 104072 as the most popular representation of a Powers Single Pot Still.
I found the creamy beginning and spicy end more pronounced & better balanced than the alternative cask – although it must be said both were fine whiskeys!
Both releases come complete with an attractive presentation box and will be available in SuperValu stores nationwide in October with a price tag of around €145 each.
With only 276 bottles for Cask 147620 & 216 for Cask 104072 – I doubt they will hang around for long!