The best Irish whiskeys according to the international wine and spirits competition

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In total, six Irish whiskeys won outstanding gold medals and 12 whiskeys won gold medals in the 2021 International Wine and Spirits Competition (IWSC) jury.

The IWSC is an annual wine and spirits competition. Founded in 1969 by Anton Massel, it has become the largest competition of its kind in the world. Spirits are rated on a 100 point scale and awards are given for outstanding gold (98-100 points), gold (95-97 points), silver (90-94 points) and bronze ( 85-89 points).

The competition employs more than 250 judges, from all over the world, who assess thousands of wines and spirits in 1,500 different categories.

Irish Distillers (IDL), a division of the French beverage conglomerate Pernod Ricard, has won outstanding gold medals for its Jameson Black Barrel, NAS, 40% ABV, 750 ml and for his Very rare Midleton Barry Crockett Legacy, NAS, 46% ABV, 750 ml.

Jameson, the world’s best-selling blended Irish whiskey, offers a variety of expressions that reflect a range of maturation protocols or finishing techniques. Black Barrel is a triple distilled whiskey that is aged in barrels that have been charred twice. Hence the term “black barrel”.

The additional charring brings out more pronounced aromas of toffee, butterscotch and chocolate / fudge. On the palate, it is soft, with notes of nuts, cinnamon and vanilla. Think of it as a more intensely flavored version of Jameson.

The Midleton Barry Crockett Legacy is an annual vintage, which debuted in 2011, of Midleton Single Pot Still whiskeys. It is named after Barry Crockett, a second generation Master Distiller from the Midleton Distillery. The whiskey is a selection of triply distilled jar whiskeys, aged exclusively in ex-bourbon American oak barrels, which are mixed with a small amount of alcohol, also triple distilled, which has been aged in charred American oak barrels .

It shows a distinctive note of vanilla and toasted oak on the palate, as well as notes of fresh lime zest, pear, fresh berries and green pepper. On the palate it shows a range of citrus flavors including lime and tangerine, with vanilla and a hint of cinnamon and a slight peppery note.

Tullamore DEW, Special Reserve, 12 years, 40% ABV, 750 ml, also won an outstanding gold medal. The Special Reserve is a blend of jarred whiskey, malt whiskey and grain whiskey, all tri-distilled, which have been aged in a blend of old bourbon and sherry casks.

The whiskey offers a complex palette of dried fruits, accompanied by notes of chocolate and candied almonds, all wrapped in a smooth and velvety texture.

Pearse Lyons Distillery, Marriage Malt Whiskey, NAS, 44% ABV, 700 ml is the Pearse Lyons Distillery’s first exclusive and is limited to just 888 bottles available only in its gift shop.

The whiskey is a blend of malt whiskeys that includes both whiskeys produced at Pearse Lyons and other malt whiskeys sourced elsewhere. They were aged in a combination of old barrels of bourbon and Pedro Ximenez sherry (PX).

It is a very aromatic whiskey that presents rich notes of cooked cereals, accompanied by zest of candied citrus fruits, vanilla, candied and dried fruits, especially apricot, apple and pear. There are additional notes of vanilla custard, accompanied by spicy notes of cinnamon and cloves and a little light black pepper. A smooth, smooth-textured whiskey that makes an excellent sipping.

Lambay Irish whiskey, malt whiskey, NAS, 43% ABV, 750 ml, is a blend of double and triple distilled malt whiskeys that have been aged on the Isle of Lambay, off the east coast of Ireland. The whiskey is finished in barrels that previously contained Cognac from joint venture partner Camus Cognac.

The result is a malt whiskey that offers pronounced aromas of tropical fruits, in particular banana and coconut, as well as notes of fig and dried red berries and spices of cardamom and nutmeg.

St. Patrick’s Distillery, Irish Single Malt Peat Whiskey, 4 years, 45% ABV, 750 ml, is a new Irish distillery, founded in 2014, located in St. Patrick’s Mills in County Cork. This whiskey is a new expression and has not yet been released in the United States.

A total of 12 Irish whiskeys won gold medals. IDL won five of these medals with victories for:

Croze by Jameson Cooper, NAS, 43% ABV, 750 mL.

Very rare midleton 2021, NAS, 40% ABV, 750 ml.

Method and Madness, Single Malt Irish Whiskey, NAS, 46% ABV, 750 ml.

Jameson Caskmates, IPA Edition, NAS, 40% ABV, 750ml.

Irish Whiskey Method and Madness Single Pot Still, NAS, 46% ABV, 750 ml.

Among the other winners:

Listoke Distillery, Wise Owl Irish Whiskey, NAS, 43% ABV, 750 ml.

Hinch Distillery, Craft & Casks Irish Whiskey Imperial Stout Finish, NAS, 43% ABV, 750 ml.

Pearse Lyons Distillery, Founders Choice, Single Malt Whiskey, 12 years old, 43% ABV, 750 ml.

Powerscourt Distillery, Fercullen Irish Whiskey, Single Malt, 18 years old, 43% ABV, 750 ml.

Waterford Distillery, Irish Single Malt Whiskey, Single Farm Origin-Hook Head Edition 1.1, 4 years, 50% ABV, 750 ml.

The Craft Irish Whiskey Company, The Devil’s Keep Irish Whiskey, 29 years old, 45.7% ABV, 700 ml.

Tullamore DEW, Single Malt Whiskey, 18 years old, 40% ABV, 750 ml.

Irish whiskey has been hot red for the past five years. It is the fastest growing category of whiskey in the world. The number of operating Irish distilleries has now grown to 39, and even more distilleries are in the planning stages as the historic comeback of the Irish whiskey industry shows no signs of slowing down.

In total, six Irish whiskeys won outstanding gold medals and 12 whiskeys won gold medals at the 2021 International Wine and Spirits Competition (IWSC).

The IWSC is an annual wine and spirits competition. Founded in 1969 by Anton Massel, it has become the largest competition of its kind in the world. Spirits are rated on a 100 point scale and awards are given for outstanding gold (98-100 points), gold (95-97 points), silver (90-94 points) and bronze ( 85-89 points).

The competition employs more than 250 judges, from all over the world, who assess thousands of wines and spirits in 1,500 different categories.

Irish Distillers (IDL), a division of the French beverage conglomerate Pernod Ricard, has won outstanding gold medals for its Jameson Black Barrel, NAS, 40% ABV, 750 ml and for his Very rare Midleton Barry Crockett Legacy, NAS, 46% ABV, 750 ml.

Jameson, the world’s best-selling blended Irish whiskey, offers a variety of expressions that reflect a range of maturation protocols or finishing techniques. Black Barrel is a triple distilled whiskey that is aged in barrels that have been charred twice. Hence the term “black barrel”.

The additional charring brings out more pronounced aromas of toffee, toffee and fudge. On the palate, it is soft, with notes of nuts, cinnamon and vanilla. Think of it as a more intensely flavored version of Jameson.

The Midleton Barry Crockett Legacy is an annual vintage, which debuted in 2011, of Midleton Single Pot Still whiskeys. It is named after Barry Crockett, a second generation Master Distiller from the Midleton Distillery. The whiskey is a selection of triply distilled jar whiskeys, aged exclusively in old American oak bourbon casks, which are mixed with a small amount of alcohol, also tri-distilled, which has been aged in an “unseasoned” , that is, nine charred barrels of American oak.

It shows a distinctive note of vanilla and toasted oak on the palate, along with notes of fresh lime zest, pear, fresh berries and green pepper. On the palate it shows a range of citrus flavors including lime and tangerine, with vanilla and a hint of cinnamon and a slight peppery note.

Tullamore DEW, Special Reserve, 12 years, 40% ABV, 750 ml, also won an outstanding gold medal. The Special Reserve is a blend of jarred whiskey, malt whiskey and grain whiskey, all tri-distilled, which have been aged in a blend of old bourbon and sherry casks.

The whiskey offers a complex palette of dried fruits, accompanied by notes of chocolate and candied almonds, all wrapped in a smooth and velvety texture.

Pearse Lyons Distillery, Marriage Malt Whiskey, NAS, 44% ABV, 700 ml is the Pearse Lyons Distillery’s first exclusive and is limited to just 888 bottles available only in its gift shop.

The whiskey is a blend of malt whiskeys that includes both whiskeys produced at Pearse Lyons and other malt whiskeys sourced elsewhere. They were aged in a combination of old barrels of bourbon and Pedro Ximenez sherry (PX).

It is a very aromatic whiskey that presents rich notes of cooked cereals, accompanied by zest of candied citrus fruits, vanilla, candied and dried fruits, especially apricot, apple and pear. There are additional notes of vanilla custard, accompanied by spicy notes of cinnamon and cloves and a little light black pepper. A smooth, smooth-textured whiskey that makes an excellent sipping.

Irish whiskey Lambay, malt whiskey, NAS, 43% ABV, 750 ml, is a blend of double and triple distilled malt whiskeys that have been aged on the Isle of Lambay, off the east coast of Ireland. The whiskey is finished in barrels that previously contained Cognac from joint venture partner Camus Cognac.

The result is a malt whiskey that offers pronounced aromas of tropical fruits, in particular banana and coconut, as well as notes of fig and dried red berries and spices of cardamom and nutmeg.

St. Patrick’s Distillery, Irish Single Malt Peat Whiskey, 4 years, 45% ABV, 750 ml, is a new Irish distillery, founded in 2014, located in St. Patrick’s Mills in County Cork. This whiskey is a new expression and has not yet been released in the United States.

A total of 12 Irish whiskeys won gold medals. IDL won five of these medals with victories for:

Croze by Jameson Cooper, NAS, 43% ABV, 750 mL.

Very rare midleton 2021, NAS, 40% ABV, 750 ml.

Method and Madness, Single Malt Irish Whiskey, NAS, 46% ABV, 750 ml.

Jameson Caskmates, IPA Edition, NAS, 40% ABV, 750ml.

Irish Whiskey Method and Madness Single Pot Still, NAS, 46% ABV, 750 ml.

Among the other winners:

Listoke Distillery, Wise Owl Irish Whiskey, NAS, 43% ABV, 750 ml.

Hinch Distillery, Craft & Casks Irish Whiskey Imperial Stout Finish, NAS, 43% ABV, 750 ml.

Pearse Lyons Distillery, Founders Choice, Single Malt Whiskey, 12 years old, 43% ABV, 750 ml.

Powerscourt Distillery, Fercullen Irish Whiskey, Single Malt, 18 years old, 43% ABV, 750 ml.

Waterford Distillery, Irish Single Malt Whiskey, Single Farm Origin-Hook Head Edition 1.1, 4 years, 50% ABV, 750 ml.

The Craft Irish Whiskey Company, The Devil’s Keep Irish Whiskey, 29 years old, 45.7% ABV, 700 ml.

Tullamore DEW, Single Malt Whiskey, 18 years old, 40% ABV, 750 ml.

Irish whiskey has been hot red for the past five years. It is the fastest growing category of whiskey in the world. The number of operating Irish distilleries has now grown to 39, and even more distilleries are in the planning stages as the historic comeback of the Irish whiskey industry shows no signs of slowing down.

Sláinte


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