A special whiskey require a suitable time to be opened.
The festive season provided an opportune occasion to crack open & share the contents of this splendid bottle.
Teeling Whiskey Company were at the forefront of bringing whiskey distilling back to the heart of Dublin when they opened up in 2015.
They have successfully leveraged that position by releasing a series of limited edition whiskeys under The Revival series label.
As much care & thought has gone into the presentation packaging of this whiskey as to the actual contents.
The elegant oversized black & gold box swings open to reveal an opulent looking bottle. The Phoenix seal of approval officially declares the contents.
The bottle itself is suitably heavy & chunky while the gold topped cork stopper is also of solid weight.
All of this screams ‘Premium Product’ to me – as well as added expense.
I’ve a feeling a lot of these bottles are destined to never being opened.
Some may end up on prominent display to boost the credibility & bragging rights of the owner.
Others may be hidden in vaults to accrue added value & emerge at a future date for sale to eager collectors.
I’m into whiskey however for the taste & flavour so a glass – or two – was poured!
Now I must admit to being fond of Teeling Whiskey.
They generally release at 46% or above which usually denotes non chill filtering & natural colour. The crispness, clarity & richness of flavour attest to this.
Revival V is no exception.
For me the ex-cognac cask have added a sumptuous nuttiness to the mix – which has me hooked.
Being a 12 year old the original whiskey clearly wasn’t distilled by Teeling.
They acquired a large inventory of sourced stock from an unnamed Irish Distillery – or distilleries – from which they’ve further matured, finished, mixed & blended under the expert guidance of Master Distiller Alex Chasko.
What may have originally been destined as the malt content in a blend, a 40% chill filtered & coloured supermarket whiskey – or even a single cask distillery offering – has ended up as a splendidly presented limited release whiskey.
This is not core release Teeling.
This is unicorn bottling.
A one off chance to grab some quality Irish Whiskey while it lasts.
I’m glad someone grabbed it for me.
This kind of product is no longer within my reach!
Herself was going to a play at the fabulous Galway International Arts Festival then on to meet mutual friends for a meal – so I tagged along.
Not being a thespian buff I thought I’d visit Mars – a sculpture on show at the former Persse Distillery – only to discover it had moved!
Ah well – time for a drink.
An Púcán provided the refreshments & as I scanned their extensive whiskey list for something I’d not tried before – Armorik Classic Single Malt fitted the bill.
It took sometime to locate the bottle as it was on show in one of the numerous display cabinets around the bar – but it did arrive.
The bottle read ‘non chill filtered, 46%‘ which is a good start. ‘caramel added’ is stated on the back – although according to Warenghem Distilley’s website they have since moved to ‘natural colour’ for their offerings.
The nose proved clean, fresh & inviting with hits of old leather.
Decent body, smooth mouthfeel displaying notes on the savoury, umami spectrum.
Finishes with a frisson of spice.
Armorik Classic comes over as a grounded whiskey showing it’s earthy agricultural roots – perhaps even a smidgen of terroir using French barley?
Given a number of releases from new distilleries – possibly due to commercial demand – were to my tastes at least offered a tad fresh – Batch 1 displayed a richness of flavour & welcome complexity in the emerging distillery category.
Presented at 47% the nose was initially a touch spirity but a lovely rich bourbony warmth of sweet vanillas & a touch of nuttiness captured me.
A silky mouth coating feel on the palate further opened up those gorgeous notes.
An entertaining bite on the finish furnished with a dry nutty prickliness – a combination of the high ABV & Oloroso finishing no doubt – danced merrily away.
An impressive debut from the Ballina based distillery.
Whiskey finished in an ever increasing array of fancy casks appears to be de rigueur right now – so it’s always refreshing to get back to basics with an ex-bourbon cask only Irish Whiskey.
Even if ex-bourbon maturation only became a ‘thing’ due to American Bourbon legislation which states new – or virgin – American oak casks must be used in the production of bourbon – resulting in all those once used casks being shipped to Ireland to be refilled to mature our whiskey.
Ahead of St Patrick’s Day a gathering – or Clan – of Ahascragh Distillery friends met up at Brewery Lane in Ballinasloe for the revealing of the latest super premium releases by Ahascragh.
Clan Colla 20 Year Old Amarone & Clan Colla 20 Year Old PX are both single malts sourced by Ahascragh Distillery but finished & bottled by them at their own facility.
Presented at a pleasing 46% with no chill filtering & natural colour – as are almost all Ahascragh products – the Amarone additionally comes in a 55% single cask, cask strength limited edition.
Along with an 11 Year Old Blend & the UAIS – pronounced ‘oosh’ – core release – the tasting in Brewery Lane marked a 1st local ‘in-person’ event by Ahascragh.
It was an opportunity for folks to sample the diverse range of whiskey – and gin – on offer from Ahascragh & hear of their ambitious plans to be the first carbon neutral distillery in Ireland.
Having previously enjoyed both the 11yo Blend & 19yo Oloroso Single Malt in Katie Daly’s – I was interested to see what another year & different cask finishes brought to the single malt whiskey.
Clan Colla 20 Year Old Amarone, 46%
For a 20yo ex-bourbon matured single malt I found the nose rather light yet imbued by a rich fruity sweetness from the Italian Amarone cask finish.
The palate followed through with darker vanilla & hints of woodiness interplaying over summer fruits.
A nice nuttiness appeared on the finish which dried out leaving a long & pleasant prickliness dancing away.
Clan Colla 20 Year Old PX, 46%
I was greeted by a lovely malty nose augmented by a dark nuttiness.
The palate displayed more warm autumnal stone fruits rather than the lighter summer feel of the Amarone.
Again a drying finish rounded the whiskey off but with a juicier appeal.
For my tastes the 20yo PX brought a darker warmth to the proceeding which suited me better.
Both are lovely whiskeys which hopefully showcase future releases from Ahascragh Distillery’s own spirit – when ready.
The evening was a welcome return to live tastings with congenial company in the hospitable venue of Brewery Lane.
I wasn’t going to add to my growing whiskey bottles – but as a percentage of sales were being donated to the UNHCR relief fund for Ukraine – herself got the Xin Gin & in-keeping with my spending limit I went home with the UAIS whiskey.
Many thanks to the warm welcome of Ahascragh Distillery & all the team.