I can’t help feeling single grain whiskey is still trying to escape the slur Messers Jameson x2, Roe & Power attached to it back in 1879 labelling the category as ‘Silent Whisky’ in their anti-Coffey-Still publication ‘Truths About Whisky’.
The growth of Irish Whiskey doesn’t just restrict itself to exciting new brands, bottles & distilleries – it also spins off into a growing library of books on the subject.
One of the most delightful books I happened to read recently was Whiskey Burn by Ben Birdsall.
It combines a travelogue of his adventures round Ireland on a vintage Vespa visiting as many whiskey distilleries as possible – along with an entertaining & informative description of those distilleries themselves – as well as the people, places & characters that shape those distilleries – and perhaps the resultant taste of the whiskey too!
Packed full of fabulous photography, amusing anecdotes and a quirky sense of humour, Ben manages to capture the essence of Irish Whiskey on his circumnavigation of the Emerald Isle.
Published in 2018, Whiskey Burn is already out of date due to the fast moving explosion of Irish Whiskey.
Distilleries that were mere building sites or planning diagrams at the time are now fully functional & accepting visitors like Powerscourt Distillery, Dublin Liberties Distillery and Roe & Co.
Others have sadly failed to find adequate backers for their dreams like Quiet Man Distillery.
But as an apt quote in the book says,
” by the time they come out, all whiskey books are out of date”
This however doesn’t detract from the core enthusiasm displayed within Ben’s prose – nor the commitment of the characters encountered.