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  1. #1
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    Irish Whiskey...what else!

    I do not have an extensive collection of Irish but tonight I am enjoying Black Bush. I find it to be a bolder and more complex Irish whiskey than the white label (as expected). It is different in character than the Jameson, a little spicier and sharper. Jameson Gold is an excellent tasting whiskey...if you like the idea of a little honey overtone on the palate. I noticed in Binny's 3 new whiskeys...the name now slips my memory..1 is a peated Irish, 2 nd is a sherried Irish and the 3 rd is a single malt. Price wise they are attractive and I must do a little digging on them...tasting notes etc. My next purchase will be Redbreast. Does anybody have personal experience with the famed Middleton?

  2. #2
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    Re: Irish Whiskey...what else!

    I bought a bottle of Midleton Very Rare, now consumed. It was the 1999 I believe. The character of the whiskey varies with each bottling. While well made, it is still a blend (of pot still and grain whiskey). The grain element is quite noticeable and did not marry well, in my opinion, with the floral pot still (kind of a honeysuckle quality). Everything comes down to price vs. quality. This cost me about double what I would pay for, say, Johnnie Walker Gold Label, to my mind one of the best blends in the world and far better value than Midleton. If you like the Irish pot still flavor (evident in all Jameson's whiskeys and Powers, but not Bushmills), then Redbreast is an even better value than Midleton because it is 100% pot still (triple distilled, like all Irish, in large pots, but from a mash of malted and unmalted barley). Redbreast can be somewhat assertive though and Midleton, like Johnnie Walker, mediates its best whiskeys through a grain background, which is a good notion if done well). I just find Midleton Very Rare highly priced in relation to most other products issuing from the Midleton distillery. If anyone wants to experience the blending art at its master class level, the Johnnie Walker Gold Label is unbeatable and is comparatively speaking excellent value.

    Cy

  3. #3
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    Re: Irish Whiskey...what else!

    I recently tried the Redbreast and I agree that it's one of the finest whiskeys I've ever had. For a cheaper alternative that tastes quite similer, try the Powers-- a real sleeper.

  4. #4
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    Re: Irish Whiskey...what else!

    I fully agree. Power's is reported (by Jim Murray) to have 80% pot still content. It is a luxury blend at a very moderate price.

    Cy

  5. #5
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    Re: Irish Whiskey...what else!

    Based on Jim Murray's recommendation, I plan to try Powers at some point in the future. I've seen it, and the price is very reasonable.

    My Irish whiskey stash is very small at this time. In addition to a bottle of the white labeled Bushmills that I've had forever (I'm not overly fond of it ), I recently decided to try a bottle of Tyrconnell Single Malt, which the label identifies as "Pure Pot Still Single Malt", and is imported by Premium Imports, of Bardstown, KY! The Tyroconnell is quite good, and was reasonably priced as I recall. As I like the peated Islay Single Malts, I'd like to try the Connemara, which is made by the Cooley Distillery. They also make the Tyrconnell.

    Happy St. Patricks Day!

    Bob

  6. #6
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    Re: Irish Whiskey...what else!

    The Tyconnell is made by Cooley as noted, the only independent Irish distiller. Despite saying "pot still" on the label, the Cooley non-blended whiskeys are not pot still in the traditional sense (i.e., incorporating raw barley grist in the mash), but rather in the Scottish sense of being all-malt distillate made in a pot still process. Connemara is however quite different to Scottish Islay malts - the smoke notes are similar (Cooley uses Scottish peated malt) but there is an absence of the salt and iodine notes associated with aging in coastal warehouses affected by salt winds and nearby cold seas. (An Oregon peated single malt, McCarthy's, is similar to Connemara in this sense).

    Irish whiskey if not overly blended has a very definite character, even the ones not strictly pot still. The American writer John Clellon Holmes likened the taste of Irish whiskey to "biting on a new penny at high altitude". This is from the limpid Dublin sketch in his classic essay-work, "Nothing More To Declare" (Dutton).

    Cy

  7. #7
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    Re: Irish Whiskey...what else!

    Thanks for the very informative posts...I have read several reviews saying don't be fooled by the price...Powers is a very good whiskey. I will pick up the Redbreast soon. Slante'

  8. #8
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    Re: Irish Whiskey...what else!

    </font><blockquote><font class="small">In reply to:</font><hr />
    The American writer John Clellon Holmes

    [/QUOTE]


    Do you know where I can get that collection?? The only thing I have ever been able to find (and read) by him was the novel GO.


    TomC

  9. #9
    Bourbonian of the Year 2011
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    Re: Irish Whiskey...what else!

    Hi Tom, great to find another fan of John Clellon Holmes (a writer considered part of the Beat Generation yet apart from it in numerous respects).

    Best bet is to buy Holmes' collected essays, which include the one I mentioned, arranged in a three volume set issued by The University of Arkansas Press, Fayetteville.

    The volumes were issued in 1988 shortly after Holmes' untimely death.

    One volume is devoted to biographical essays (including his landmark essays on Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg); a second is his cultural essays; and the third collects his travel writing.

    He was one of America's finest essayists, and like many, he had a good appreciation of good wine, beer and liquor..

  10. #10
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    Re: Irish Whiskey...what else!

    Cool! It started out as a fascination with beat writers (esp Kerouac, who hails from the same hometown and High School as I) but has since broadened out in many fascinating directions. I will definately have to look for that.


    Thanx Again.

    TomC

 

 

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