Country: Ireland
Type: Single Pot Still
Bottler: Distiller
ABV: 58.1%
Score: 92 points

Midleton Dair Ghaelach. Image courtesy Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard.This single pot still Irish whiskey from Midleton is unique for two reasons. It’s the first cask-strength Midleton release, as well as the first Irish whiskey in decades to be finished in Irish Oak. The trees came from a sustainably managed forest on the Ballaghtobin Estate near Kilkenny in 2012, and were used to make casks for finishing a blend of Midleton single pot still whiskies between 15 and 22 years old previously matured in ex-Bourbon casks. Future releases will use Irish Oak from similarly managed forests around Ireland.

The nose has notes of chocolate, honey, toasted oak, fresh berries, banana cream pie, and a hint of grilled pineapple. The taste is good and spicy with clove, cinnamon, and a hint of nutmeg balanced by baked fruit cobbler with apples and berries, a hint of cocoa beans, and a touch of oak. The finish is long and well-balanced with spices and fruity notes fading slowly with a nice oakiness. This whiskey helps re-define what Irish Whiskey can be, with a nod to its past and great promise for the future. Excellent! (March, 2015)