07 December 2008

More good stuff

Irish whiskey isn't quite the Rodney Dangerfield of whiskeys, that honor probably belongs to Canadian whisky--they certainly don't get enough respect. The once-moribund Hibernian spirit industry is putting out more and more good stuff all the time. Our latest? Tyrconnell. Several years ago we attended a whiskey-fest in San Francisco, an indulgence we greatly enjoyed. A distiller from Cooley, Tyrconnell's mothership, gave us presentation on pot stills and spirit-making. And he led us in a tasting of Cooley's brands: Tyrconnell, Connemara, and Kilbeggan. We had a blast, and we noted that the workshop was barely half-full. The scotch and bourbon sessions were packed, but attendees were lukewarm on Irish. They missed out. (We had a similar experience the following year, enjoying a nearly-empty session hosted by Canadian Club, where we first discovered their superb 12-year old "Classic".) The Tyrconnell, supposedly named for a famous racehorse, is a remarkably smooth drink that manages to have both depth and delicacy. Nothing at all like bourbon, rye, Canadian, or scotch, this Irish whiskey is its own thing. And that's what it's all about, eh?

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