Irish Night – When the BMC + Whisky Ladies unite!

To the casual observer, it may seem slightly absurd that one woman living in Mumbai could be part of three whisky tasting groups. Yet each are unique and completely delightful.

Particularly our Whisky Ladies group attracts quite a bit of… ahem… gentlemanly attention with many men wishing to crash our female only party.

However the lads over at our Bombay Malt & Cigar club are a rather more civilised lot. Clever gents, they knew the best way to enjoy an evening with the ladies would be to extend a gracious invitation to the mysterious whisky women of Mumbai.

And thus the Irish night was conceived!

While it didn’t take 9 months for this momentum occasion to become a reality, many  most amusing efforts went into selecting more sociable Irish whiskies, with the gentlemen taking full charge of sourcing everything from the whiskies to pipettes to acquiring more Glencairn classes to even glass covers!

Bushmills Distillery 21 May 2016 (Photo: Arti)

Bushmills Distillery 21 May 2016 (Photo: Arti)

At one point some 10+ whiskies were being bandied about as options, however in the end they settled on:

Then a few more were added as ‘bonus’ whiskies:

As always, the proof of what proved most popular is what was consumed most during the evening… in this case, the evidence is quite clear! The Bushmill’s 21 year beat the pants off the entire competition. Followed by the 16, 10 and Steamship lagged behind…

Bushmills Steamship, 10, 16, 21

Bushmills Steamship, 10, 16, 21

Our venue host personally cooked an Irish stew as the focus entrée of a fabulous sit down dinner which followed our slightly inebriated pronouncements about the various drams. We even had an Irish themed assortment of music and naturally much merriment was had by all!

To say the lads fully embraced our Irish evening is a wee bit of an understatement.

As for the lasses? Let’s just say we are plotting how to return the courtesy… with a theme that may completely disrupt normal notions of what defines a good dram!

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Tyrconnell 10 year Madeira Cask 46%

And we are off to the races!

Tyrconnell was once the Cooley (now Kilbeggan) distillery‘s flagship whisky. Once an independent Irish distillery, the label celebrates the Wyatt family champion ‘Tyrconnell’ racehorse – best known for winning in 1876 at odds of 100 to 1 the Irish “The National Produce Stakes.”

In the last few years I’ve started to explore more Irish whiskies… and am quite impressed with the results of the ‘single pot still’ method that  produces the remarkable Redbreast and Yellow Spot.

The Tyrconnell 10 year Madeira Cask won the Irish Whiskey of the Year in Jim Murray`s Whisky Bible 2008.

So… I was both intrigued and delighted when a friend from the UK included this in my ‘Irish whiskies’ shipment on her trip to India last year.

I first shared it with our tasting team on 14 June 2014 together with Ledaig Island and Talisker Dark Storm.

Tyrconnell 10 year Madiera (Whisky Lady)

Tyrconnell 10 year Madeira (Whisky Lady)

And what did we find?

Tyrconnell 10 year Madeira Cask 46%

  • Colour – Light gold
  • Nose – Tamarind, fruit and flowers, copper, sour dough, chikoo, a sense of being a bit ‘young’
  • Taste – An initial sharp nip then spice, coconut, leather, pronounced exceedingly ‘nice’
  • Finish – Alas nothing spectacular… a hint of light leather and mild fruit, while it doesn’t dash off instantly, it does not have the long linger some reviewers boast!
  • Add water? – Don’t… does nothing to improve and with such a light whisky not needed at all

In our blind tasting session, we speculated that while clearly young, it showed ‘nice’ promise.

In my recent revisit, it re-inforced the impression of a light pleasant whiskey. The mood is that of a gentle cantor in a ladies saddle rather than a fast and furious dash to the finish line.

While certainly enjoyable, it doesn’t have that extra distinctive and complex character that I find most attractive.

And I’ve come to learn the 10 year has been discontinued and newer offerings are now are either a standard NAS Single Malt or 15 not 10 years… perhaps an older incarnation of the Tyrconnell will gain those additional elements that can transform a whisky from merely ‘nice’ into ‘oooh baby!’

Special ‘nod’ to a fab lass who was our delightful ‘mule’!

Tyrconnell 10 year (Whisky Lady)

Tyrconnell 10 year (Whisky Lady)

What others are saying:

Other Irish whiskies sampled til date:

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