Jameson has reopened its Bow St. brand home in Dublin – formerly known as The Old Jameson Distillery – following an €11m redevelopment. We sent Jake over to Ireland for the lowdown on the new multi-sensory experience and masterclasses.
First covered here on the blog during our interview with Irish Distillers Master Blender Billy Leighton a month ago, Jameson’s Bow St. brand home in Smithfield, Dublin has recently reopened following an ambitious €11m redevelopment. Now fully up and running, I paid them a visit last week.
Located on the site of John Jameson’s original 1780 Irish whisky distillery, a Jameson visitor centre in Dublin was first opened back in 1997. By the summer of 2016 a significant refurb was required to bring the experience up to date and handle greater numbers of visitors (over-subscription and delays had become a real problem, by their own admission), but what they’ve achieved since September is pretty damn impressive.
The launch of new Irish whiskey Roe & Co also sees Diageo return to Irish whiskey and the George Roe name return to bottles, plus there’s a new distillery in the works! We spoke to Roe & Co brand ambassador Peter O’Connor to get the full lowdown.
There are at least four stories in one here so let’s take a quick look at each before we get a bit more detail in our interview with brand ambassador Peter O’Connor. The new release Roe & Co Irish whiskey – available now – is a blend of single malt and grain Irish whiskeys matured in ex-bourbon American oak casks, with a high proportion of those being first-fill. Priced at around the £30 mark it’s bottled at 45% abv, non-chill filtered and aimed at the ‘premium’ market with cocktails very much in mind (as we’ll hear from Peter shortly). Diageo, of course, owned Bushmills for years from 2005 onwards but agreed to sell it to Casa Cuevo towards the end of 2014, which has meant they haven’t had a stake in Irish whiskey – the fastest growing spirits category in the world – for the last couple of years.
That Boutique-y Whisky Company has announced that they’re introducing age statements to all future releases with immediate effect and, right on cue, they have a raft of new and exciting releases on the way!
All the new releases are listed below and are also available to buy or pre-order from Master of Malt now.
Categories : News
Yesterday saw the World’s Best whiskies and spirits crowned at the World Drinks Awards, including the World Whiskies Awards.
Before we get into the results though, some good news! Drinks by the Dram have once again teamed up with the World Drinks Awards to create an easy way to taste a whole bunch of these award winners! Head over to our World Drinks Awards 2016 page to browse their selection of 8 different World Whiskies Awards and World Drinks Awards Winners Tasting Sets.
Categories : Armagnac
, Irish Whiskey
, Japanese Whisky
, Scotch Whisky
Just three days until Christmas and, including today’s, just three drams left in The Whisky Advent Calendar. Slightly bittersweet perhaps, with Christmas being completely awesome but having to say goodbye to a new whisky every day… Fortunately Drinks by the Dram have thought of that, and have a range of dram-filled Christmas Crackers too!
For now some fine drams remain, however, with another Irish whiskey to enjoy behind window 22 courtesy of those Teeling boys. First their family gave us the independent Cooley distillery (producing the excellent Connemara Peated single malt and Greenore single grain, for example), purchased by Beam in 2011, and now in 2015 they’ve opened the first whisky distillery in Dublin for 125 years!
We’ll be honest with you, we didn’t think anything Drinks by the Dram’s The Whisky Advent Calendar could throw at us would be more exciting than the release of a new Star Wars movie. (Even with the endless adverts beforehand “make sure you have the official Star Wars mascara” etc.) Not until the final window, perhaps. Wrong, we were, however, as day 19 has provided The Lost Distilleries Blend from The Blended Whisky Company!
Named World’s Best Blended Whisky at Whisky Magazine’s World Whiskies Awards in 2014, it does exactly what it says on the tin – it’s a blend of whiskies exclusively from sadly now closed distilleries, many of whom have become legendary such as Port Ellen and Caperdonich. There’s even some Imperial entanglements in there… Yes, the force is strong with this one.
Day 3 already? Time flies when you’re having #WhiskyAdvent fun! (Although it’s definitely not too late to catch up if you don’t yet have a Drinks by the Dram advent calendar…)
In The Whisky Advent Calendar today is a treat from one of our favourite independent bottlers and blenders, whisky zealot John Glaser’s truly excellent Compass Box.
The Great King Street Artist’s Blend takes its name from the address of Compass Box’s Edinburgh offices and, like all their whiskies, is bottled with neither chill-filtration nor artificial colouring. Priding themselves on transparency, we can tell you that this small batch blend always contains around 50% malt whisky (a very high percentage for a blend) In fact, we can tell you that it’s made up of 46% first fill American oak matured Lowland grain whisky, 28% ‘fruity and malty’ Northern Highland single malt, 17% ‘grassy’ Northern Highland single malt, and 9% ‘meaty’ Speyside single malt! (66% of the blend is matured in first fill American oak overall and 8% in first fill Sherry butts with 28% finished in new French oak casks).
On the Monday 30th of November and Tuesday 1st of December, the Telegraph will once again be presenting their Telegraph Whisky Experience at One Whitehall Place in London, bringing together a selection of leading whisky brands, distillers, specialists and enthusiasts!
Hosted by the charismatic whisky expert Charles MacLean, the Telegraph Whisky Experience will allow lovers of the historic spirit the chance to share a dram with the folks behind the stills, as well as getting access to a private whisky fair in Gladstone library, enjoying a stunning meal designed by the One Whitehall Place head chef and even attend one of two fascinating masterclasses.
Categories : News
Space. The final front ear. Home of paranoid robots named HAL, space stations that ain’t no moons, cats and David Bowie. Recently whisky has also been crowbarred into this list with alarming regularity. So much so, that I thought it was time to take another look at it all.
You see, having inexplicably found myself in Disneyland Paris for a few days back in August, during which time I naturally took up residence on Space Mountain, I now quite reasonably consider myself to be the office expert when it comes to all things space.
It was truly a battle for the ages, and now – sooner than you may have expected – we can reveal the results!
If you’re wondering what this Whisky Magazine #BattleOfTheBlends in association with Master of Malt business is all about then you can catch up by reading our previous blog post about the contest. Right now though, it’s time to crown a champion…
The heavyweight contest between Dave Broom and Neil Ridley was decided by the noses and palates of over 250 judges including Master Blenders and well-known brand ambassadors as well as whisky and spirits writers, bloggers and enthusiasts – perhaps even your good self (if so, thank you!). Below you’ll find my own Battle of the Blends tasting notes, as well as some comments from the judging panel, before the 2015 winner is revealed…