Some American distilleries have lately been the subject of both praise and criticism for their decision to finish some of their blends in casks that previously held other types of alcohol. Despite the negative sentiments of some people, many find these expressions delightful. In fact, even a highly regarded label such as Redbreast is also dabbling in the process with the Tawny Port Cask Edition.

While we understand the reluctance of others who personally prefer their spirits bottled the traditional way, it also means they can miss out on wonderful new experiences. What we have here is a single pot still whiskey from a distillery based in Ireland County Cork that was established in 1903. Their classic offering is already exceptional, but there are ways to make it extraordinary.

Since there is no pleasing everybody, boldly tweaking the formula is a double-edged sword. Thankfully, whiskey purveyors are usually eager to sample something fresh like the Tawny Port Cask Edition. The establishment behind this non-age statement release is reportedly Midleton. Aside from Redbreast, they also produce whiskeys for Green Spot, The Irishman, Writers Tears, Powers, and Jameson, to name a few.

According to Redbreast, the “Tawny Port Cask Edition is a single pot still Irish whiskey initially matured in a combination of bourbon and oloroso sherry casks. The whiskey was then finished in Tawny Port casks for a number of years, adding a new dimension to the profile used in the expression.” It is indicated that the final maturation takes 14 to 25 months in “freshly seasoned tawny port hogsheads.”

As for the tasting notes, there are aromas of dried cherry, caramelized almonds, pot still spices, buttered pastry, praline, seasoned oak, and floral honey. A sip of the Tawny Port Cask Edition reveals toasted oak, orange marmalade, fried fig, fresh plums, hazelnut, chocolates, and salted caramel. Redbreast states the Irish whiskey’s essences have a long finish and leave your mouth with hints of tawny seasoned oak.

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Images courtesy of Redbreast