Redbreast is a spicy and rich single pot still whiskey from Ireland. This Irish whiskey is matured exclusively in first fill bourbon and sherry casks. Their cask selection and blending makes their whiskeys stand out from the other Canadian whiskeys. Below is a quick review of the four popular whiskeys in the Redbreast Irish whiskey collection.
Redbreast 12 Year Old
The essence of Redbreast 12 Year Old can be explained in three words: clean, grassy, and smooth. As it is a single pot whiskey, the grassiness makes sense because of the green barley in the mash bill. The smoothness of Redbreast 12 Year Old is also unsurprising as it is like most of the Irish whiskeys and despite the confusing phrase “single pot”, it is actually triple distilled. The whiskey is clear and light in the mouth and has an intricate array of flavors.
The whiskey is distilled at the Midleton Distillery in copper stills and aged in Oloroso sherry casks. The Midleton Distillery also offers Tullamore Dew and Jameson. Compared to both these whiskeys, Redbreast 12 Year Old is more complex, smoother, and offers a subtle sweetness. The finish of the whiskey is smooth and lingers for a long time.
Redbreast 12 Year Old whiskey is 80 proof or 40% ABV, 50% malted barley and 50% unmalted barley, aged for 12 years. The whiskey appears clear yellow gold in the bottle and has a thin viscosity with light and swift legs. You can experience scents of freshly mown hay, petrichor, red hots, and hints of smoky oak in the nose. As for the palate, you can feel tastes of raisins, white grape juice, buckwheat honey, and mineral water. The finish is very velvety with notes of caraway, cinnamon, and marzipan.
Redbreast 15 Year Old
You will notice that the phrase, “Pure Pot Still” adorning the 12 Year Old bottle is not present in the 15 Year Old edition. In its place, you can find “Single Irish Pot Still”. Pure Pot Still refers to Irish whiskey that is made from a combination of malted and un-malted barley. The Redbreast 12 Year Old is a pure pot still whiskey. Single malt scotch is distilled from 100% malted barley and only a few whiskeys manufactured today are Pure Pot Still, but the style remains important in Irish whiskey making.
Redbreast 15 Year Old is bottled non-chill, filtered at a higher proof. This is also made in the County Cork at the New Middleton Distillery. This is also aged in a combination of sherry and ex-bourbon casks.
The nose is more lush than the 12 Year Old whiskey and you can smell the fragrances of vanilla chocolate brownies and a little banana cream pie. There are also hints of red fruit tones, cherries, and berries in the nose. In the mouth, the whiskey is creamy and oily with more red fruits, cocoa, and vanilla bean. You will notice that the smells of salted walnuts and well-toasted grains give way to pure pot still spiciness that turns to rich, nice oaky tannins in the end. The finish is crisp, tannic and spicy with lingering notes of unsweetened chocolate and cherries.
Redbreast 21 Year Old
This older expression of Redbreast is a spicy, rich single pot still Irish whiskey. You will feel notes of menthol, tropical fruit, and leather together with the mouth-filling goodness that you can find across the range of Redbreast whiskeys.
You can experience tropical pineapple and crushed peanuts in the nose. There are also hints of rich, spicy, rounded quinces, prunes, and deeply caramelized apple. As for the palate, the whiskey is reassuring and mouth filling. You can taste a little menthol together with some spiciness and leathery tastes. There is also a touch of nectarine on the tail of the drink. In the finish, you can experience tangy fruit tastes, giving way to savory and sweet notes.
The whiskey is intricate and full of life. It is very much enjoyable and can be truly called one of the best Irish whiskeys.
Redbreast Lustau Whiskey
Redbreast Lustau is the latest whiskey release from Redbreast and offers something new and different. It is aged for 10 years, and is the youngest in the Redbreast line. A complete year of that aging takes place in sherry casks.
The nose of the whiskey features hints of toffee, dark fruit, baking spice, butterscotch, dark honey, hazelnuts and light bits of anise. The rich and velvety aroma of the whiskey is very alluring. In the palate, you can taste dark sweets, coppery malt, candied citrus, hazelnuts, creamy vanilla pudding, orchard fruit, and spices. You will notice that the palate is heavier and richer than the aroma. As for the finish, you can notice long drawls of malt, apples, sherry, caramel, and copper. These tastes will fade out to a lemony fruit leather taste smoothly.