And now the last of our “Speed Tasting” drams, in an evening where we sampled blind five different drams with just 2-3 minutes each…
What were my hasty impressions of Dram “E”?
Midleton Dair Ghaelach Batch 1, Tree 9, Bottle 2439 58.2%
- Nose – Again such a shift in character from the previous whisky. This one was milky chocolate, creamy, perfume powder, banana with even a dash of coffee
- Palate – Brash to the point of being almost harsh, spicy with a swagger, then settled into pesto… then sweet spices, even a touch of vanilla
- Finish – Burn… spicy
- Character & Complexity – Most variation between the different elements, like a ‘3 in 1’ whisky
This one was quite “hot” and young. It was a bit like a “3 in 1” whisky with its different dimensions.
Midleton distillery produces Jameson, with only a few official bottlings under the Midleton name. Dair Ghaelach is a single pot still whiskey that was aged initially in refill American oak for between 15 and 22 years and then finished for a year in virgin Irish oak from a single tree.
There are different editions, so what we sampled was different than Jim Murray’s 3rd best whisky in the world for 2016 which was 58.1%, tree not specified. Whereas ours was a different batch from Tree 9 at 58.2%.
However just for kicks, let’s see what Mr Murray had to say about it:
- Nose (23.5) – A plethora of bourbon-style liquorice and honey – though here, closer to heather honey. Polished oak floors, melt-on-the-nose grain… and so it goes on… and on… and on… An odd hybrid of Kentucky and Irish… but a thoroughbred of course…
- Taste (25) – That is probably one of the greatest deliveries of the year. Absolutely abounds in pot-still character, both being hard as nails and soft as a virgin’s kiss. But the way it interacts with the ulmo honey/red liquorice/heather-honey-vanilla/embracing grain is something of a once in a lifetime experience. And what’s more, barely a hint of spice throughout…
- Finish (24) – Just long, gorgeously silky and soft and a delicious furtherance of a spellbinding flavour compounds of before…
- Balance & overall complexity (24.5) – For heaven’s sake. This is just too ridiculously beautiful… and so unmistakably Irish for all the virgin oak. Truly world class.
What were the other whiskies “Speed Tasted“?
- A – Hyde Single Grain Burgandy Finish 46%
- B – Crown Royal Northern Harvest Rye 45% – Jim Murray’s #1 for 2016
- C – Pikesville 110 Proof Straight Rye 55% – Jim Murray’s #2 for 2016
- D – House blend using left-over Glendronach 15 year as the base with Islay malts
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