We’ve sampled quite a few Irish whiskeys over the years – not just Jameson but also a few of the T’s – Teeling, Tullamore and Tyrconnell.
Most are NAS or a maximum of 10 years… so it was a surprise to discover this Greenore Single Grain has ‘ripened’ to 18 years.
As usual, we sampled blind then revealed and reacted to what we found. Read on…
Greenore Single Grain 18 year 43%
- Nose: Lemony, musky, rose water, definitely on the sweeter side, honey, fruity but not any specific fruit, perhaps a little wine? Come back after a few minutes and the nose takes on a citrusy character
- Taste: Lemony, bitter, very light on the tongue, like sweet ice wine. Then a light spice…
- Finish: No finish to limited with the faintest hint of woody smoke
- Comment: “You can get friendly with it, and have fun”
- Overall: Unbelievable this is 18 years!
I’m not sure if others would agree, but if there is one characteristic we seem to find in whiskies from Ireland is their ‘sociable‘ quality. They may be a bit rough around the edges or a little light like this Greenore, however they all come across as quite ‘friendly’ sorts, tempting you to forget fancy shmancy tasting rituals to simply kick back to enjoy.
In this case, the very simple, fun element of the whiskey seems contradictory for its age. One typically expects a little complexity in an 18 year old single malt which is completely absent here from this grain whiskey. However if you set aside any assumptions about age = complexity, its happy character has a certain appeal.
From Cooley Distillery – part of the Kilbeggan Distilling Company now owed by Beam Suntory – the Gleenore 18 year has a limited production of 4,000 bottles.
What the Greenore folks have to say about the 18 year:
- Nose: Soft sweet corn accompanied by a burst of zesty orange and citrus lemon
- Taste: Sweet butterscotch toffee with a rich creamy vanilla character
- Finish: Sweetness lingers on the tongue giving way to smooth clean oak note
They also encourage using it as a base for cocktails – like the Old Fashioned.
Check out the other whiskies sampled at our September 2015 session:
- Compass Box Juveniles – an effervescent blend from Scotland I previously sampled at La Maison du Whisky
- Corsair Triple Smoke – another small batch American whiskey hit!
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