Tag Archives: Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder

Quinn’s Barrel Rested Poitin, 45% & Seagram’s VO, 40%

Continuing my miniature series are a pair of releases from across the pond with links to Ireland.

Great Wagon Road Distilling in North Carolina play homage to their Irish roots with Quinn’s Barrel Rested Poitin while Canadian company Seagram’s at one time used to own Bushmills Distillery.

So how did I find them?

Image courtesy Drams Delivered

Quinn’s Barrel Rested Poitin, 45%

Golden brown in colour, slightly darker than Seagram’s. A pleasant sweet fruity nose, suggestive of sherry influence. Smooth, oily mouthfeel with good depth of flavour. Luscious mouth watering finish, reminiscent of fruit pastilles.

A tad sweet for my palate – but a very entertaining tipple!

Turns out this poitin is made with organic barley & wheat – which perhaps gives the sweetness? – & is rested in new oak barrels.

Really enjoyed this one!

Image courtesy Celtic Whiskey Shop

Seagram’s VO, 40%

Pale straw. Grainy sweet caramel. Quite light. Mild & mellow palate. Hints of tingling spice on the finish.

An easy drinker livening up on the rear.

Seagram’s are now part of the Sazerac group who only recently announced their purchase of the Lough Gill Distillery in County Sligo.

A classic Canadian blend.

Preferences

For my palate Quinn’s provided a richer & more entertaining tipple.

Which one would you choose?

Sláinte

My samples were purchased from Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder here.

Great Wagon Road Distillery website here.

Seagram’s VO webpage here.

Sazerac invest in County Sligo here.

Uisce Beatha Irish Whiskey & Celtic FC Irish Whiskey, 40%

Continuing my exploration of recent Irish Whiskey offerings that may have slipped into history are these 2 blends.

Courtesy Celtic Whiskey Shop

Uisce Beatha Real Irish Whiskey, 40%

Released by ROKDrinks – a large multinational company with a varied range of branded products.

Pale in colour – which I always find reassuring. Quite light & gentle nose. Surprisingly rich depth on the palate of sweet vanilla. Lovely warmth to this one with a pleasant prickly frisson on the finish.

Very engaging.

Courtesy Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder

Celtic FC Irish Whiskey, 40%

Celtic Football Club have released a number of whiskeys over the years for their fans to enjoy.

Pale golden brown. A very gentle nose that grudgingly gives up soft aromas of sweet vanilla. Mild palate that sits easily in the mouth slowly warming to a fruity sweet finish.

Grand

Thoughts

Both of these blends offer easy accessible drinking. There’s no jagged edges or bold off-putting flavours to deter. For my tastes Uisce Beatha does it with more flair & would score the goals in this round.

Sláinte

A Pair Of Peated Irish Whiskey From The Recent Past, Magilligan & Clonmel, 8 Year Old Peated Single Malts plus a Magilligan non peater, 40%

There’s a misconception Irish Whiskey isn’t peaty.

It has been – for a long time.

Irish Distillers released a 45 Year Old Peated Malt from the Old Midleton Distillery a while ago.

The whiskey for this tasting however came from Cooley – who have done a lot to revive the peaty category in Irish Whiskey.

Trying out a pair of 8 Year Old Peated Single Malts from the same source appealed to me – so let’s dive in!

Image courtesy Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder

Magilligan Single Malt, 40%

An Irish brand dating from the 1990’s using Cooley malt bottled for Ian Macleod Distillers.

Golden brown colour with decent legs. Fusty leathery nose with a sweet fruitiness & wholesome palate. An appreciative bite on the finish.

Quite a belter!

Courtesy Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder

Magilligan 8 Year Old Peated Single Malt, 40%

Pale straw with decent legs. Gorgeous coastal iodine like smoke. An almost oily mouthfeel. The fabulous peat stacks up like a cosy warming fire on the finish.

Love this one!

Courtesy Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder

Clonmel 8 Year Old Peated Single Malt, 40%

Bottled for the Celtic Whiskey Compagnie in France.

Pale straw, decent legs. Soft gentle kiss of turf. Light palate yet smoke comes through. A more balanced well stacked glowing fire gradually fades away.

Nice

Thoughts

A tough choice!

2 gorgeous peaters – the full on Mulligan or gently cultured Clonmel?

Can depend on the mood at the time – but I’m giving it to the fabulous peaty exuberance of Mulligan 8yo.

Sláinte

Fujimi, The 7 Virtues Blend, Japan, 40%

Continuing my sample selection from the Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder is this blended whisky from Japan.

Image courtesy alconealko.sk

I like to taste without prejudice – so dived straight in.

Pale golden colour – decent legs.

Nice nose!

Old leather, slight smoke, touch of depth.

Quite light on the palate.

A lovely drying & spicy finish – which I often attribute to a hint of peat in the mix.

A well presented & balanced blended whisky with hints of depth & complexity.

Fujimi is one of these samples I enjoyed so much I’d be happy to buy a full bottle!

Sláinte

All images authors own unless stated.

Westward American Single Malt Whiskey Tasting, 45% to 46%

American Single Malt Whiskey is a ‘thing’ – well almost.

Proposals from the American Single Malt Whiskey Commission – AMWSC – have been forwarded to the Alcohol Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau – TTB – to give definition & legal framework for the category.

While the legislation catches up with evolution in the drinks industry – I’m more interested in how this American Single Malt Whiskey actually tastes!

A online tasting by the Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder was too good to miss.

Sadly – after I’d decanted my samples into my favourite Túath Whiskey Glasses to breathe – the gig was rescheduled!

Undeterred – I tasted away!

Westward Single Malt, 45%

As Thomas Mooney – cofounder of ASMWC & Westward Whiskey – is behind this whiskey I’d assume it complies with the ASMWC proposals.

100% barley – grown in Oregon for a touch of terroir – distilled & matured in Portland using lightly charred oak barrels & presented at 45%

The nose was a trifle shy – clean, fresh, malty with woody vanillas.

A gentle smooth palate.

Slight oakiness towards the rear with a flourish of tannic spice to round things off.

A very pleasant easy single malt to start the show rolling.

Westward Single Malt Stout Cask 46%

Lovely rich expressive & inviting nose.

Heavy palate feel – almost chocolatey.

Oh yes! – Enjoying this one.

Lovely touch of prickly heat on the rear too!

My kinda malt!

Westward Single Malt Pinot Noir Cask 45%

Soft gentle nose with hints of sweet fruitiness.

The summer fruits come to the fore on the palate.

Clean fresh finish dries out leaving a pleasing prickly spice.

Nice!

Thoughts

Without a doubt the Stout Cask won me over. Not that the others weren’t good whiskey – just not as inviting on my palate.

Unlike other beer/whiskey cask collaborations Westward matured their whiskey for a year in locally sourced stout barrels & the results certainly shone for me.

All 3 of these malts stand up very well against anything Scotland & Ireland has to offer.

As ever the competition within the spirits sector increases constantly.

A wonderful trio of American Single Malts to launch the category.

Sláinte

All bottle images courtesy Celtic Whiskey Shop

Saison Rum Tasting, 40% to 48%, Barbados, Jamaica & Trinidad

The diversity & quality of rums within the Saison Rum range impressed me very much.

Saison rum tasting c/othewhiskeynut

Part of the excellent Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder tasting series. As usual I missed the actual live Zoom event – but tuned in later on YouTube for more information about Saison Rum.

My brief tasting notes – in italics – were gathered catching the last of the summer sun in my back garden before watching the video.

Saison Pale Rum, 40%

Pale straw, lovely fresh pungency, reminiscent of sugar cane rum, grassy. Soft, mellow & mouth coating. Gorgeously warm spiciness on the finish.

Lovely!

Saison Rum, 42%

Golden brown, inviting hint of funk in a rich demerara cake. Sweet, smooth & warming. Dries out on the finish in a lip smacking finalé.

Gorgeous!

Saison Sherry Cask Rum, 42%

Golden brown, soft, sweet juicy fruity wine gums. Mild & mellow. Quite light on the finish with a lovely dry tingling.

Grand.

Saison Reserve Rum, 43.5%

Golden brown, soft sweet funk. Richness & depth. Mellow funky finish. A luxurious rum – well balanced & civil.

Saison Barbados 5yo, 46%

Pale brown, sweet fruit cake. Mild. Combination of sweetness & spice with a tingling finish.

One for the sweet tooth!

Saison Trinidad, 7yo, 48%

Pale brown, mild & sweet. Soft palate. Sugar & spice & all things nice.

Dessert rum!

A very enjoyable tasting indeed!

From a funky start to a dessert finish with extremely well balanced & complex rums inbetween – Saison Rum have a bottle to suit every taste.

Using rum sourced from Barbados, Jamaica & Trinidad, French Cognac House Tessendier have recently branched out into rum blending with this gorgeous Saison Rum range.

The rums are shipped to France in bulk at cask strength for careful blending & further maturation in cognac casks. Presented non chill filtered with no added sugar – the results are full of flavour & joie de vivre that my palate enjoys.

Personally my preference veers towards the younger – more brasher – funkiness of the non age statement offerings.

I found the sweetness of the Sherry Cask & Single Origin bottles a touch too much.

Flavoursome rum c/othewhiskeynut

In a close contest Saison Rum won the day with it’s solid dollop of Jamaican dunder.

Which one would your palate pick?

Hat’s off to Saison Rum!

Santé!

Bottle shots courtesy Vintus & Celtic Whiskey Shop.

Teacher’s, Highland Cream, Blend, 40%

I had the privilege of attending The Brand Ambassador’s Tasting at the fabulous Celtic Whiskey Bar & Larder in Killarney recently.

Fine whiskey, great company & mighty craic ensued.

I came away with a nugget of Irish Whiskey sales information however.

The biggest selling whisky in Ireland from the eclectic & well represented Beam-Suntory brand portfolio is by a long shot – Teacher’s Highland Cream.

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A naggin of Teacher’s c/othewhiskeynut

So I bought a bottle.

It’s yer standard Scotch Blend product.

It’s chill filtered & has added caramel. It’s non age statmented and gives no list of the 30 or so distilleries that have contributed their malt and grain whisky to construct this historic blend – yet it sells bucket loads.

It’s a straight forward no nonsense attractively peated whisky that outsells all others on the Beam-Suntory portfolio.

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The light of Scotland is added caramel. c/othewhiskeynut

The colour is ‘The Light Of Scotland’ – according to the label.

A decent hit of peat on the nose is mellowed by a sweet honeyed palate. A slightly drying peaty bite leaves toffee notes to finish on.

Plain, simple peated whisky.

Clearly what the market wants.

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Inishowen, peated Irish Whiskey c/othewhiskeynut

Yet ever since the demise of the gorgeous Inishowen – Irish Whiskey has no peated blend currently for sale.

Seems to be a big omission.

Slàinte

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