Must-Try Irish Whiskeys For Any Price Range on St. Patrick’s Day – From A Whiskey Expert
New Whiskies to Try for St. Patrick’s Day
Can you believe it’s already March? Yes, you survived New Year’s, winter’s longest days and Valentine’s Day. Spring is on the doorstep, and with it comes the first holiday beyond the dead of winter. Few occasions demand whiskey as much as St. Patrick’s Day, and we’re here to freshen up your selection.
Jameson undeniably holds a traditional place in whiskey bars, parties and pub crawls. Still, the world of whiskey has more than a few tricks up its sleeves for spirits fans who want to taste something new, interesting, and — quite frankly — more complex. As a result, these are the bottles you need to try for Saint Patrick’s Day.
Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey
Few brands are developing in the world of Irish whiskey as quickly as Teeling, whose portfolio has grown to include no shortage of solidly performing bottles at prices that are hard to beat. Teeling’s Small Batch weighs in at 46% ABV and comes with strong recommendations across the board from critics. Easy to sip; sweet and satisfying on the palate; and packed with brown sugar, clove, and creme brulee on the finish, Teeling Small Batch makes for a great Saint Patrick’s Day pour.
Redbreast 12 Year Old
Redbreast delivers a hallmark quality to its bottlings like few others in their category. Its entry-level bottling, the Redbreast 12 Year Old release, comes aged in ex-bourbon and sherry wine casks for a sweet, approachable, toffee-driven whiskey with a smooth finish. Even better, Redbreast 12 Year isn’t too expensive for a cocktail or to pour for a guest who enjoys their whiskey on ice. Whether new to Irish whiskey or a seasoned drinker, whiskey fans new and old should discover Redbreast 12 Year.
Jameson Caskmates Stout Edition
All right, so it really isn’t St. Patrick’s Day without Jameson. This year, you might want to branch out beyond the traditional, standard bottling from Jameson with something really interesting. Caskmates features the brand’s signature Irish whiskey matured in stout beer barrels. Irish whiskey and nitro stouts have long gone hand in hand as a classic bar and party cocktail, but the maturing of this whiskey in beer barrels adds an impressive depth, a new array of flavors and a fresh take on what Jameson can accomplish with a little extra influence. Jameson is clearly committed to broadening their portfolio — the Caskmates line now features several barrel finishes for the standard whiskey, but Caskmates Stout Edition stands head and shoulders above the rest if you’re hoping to dig into a completely new flavor this spring.
Connemara Peated Irish Single Malt
For fans of whiskey who lean a touch into the adventurous side, Connemara delivers a smoky dram that will have many whiskey drinkers wondering what they’ve been missing all these years.
This specific release from Connemara contains peated malt — the same source of savory, smoky character found in peated Scotch whiskeys like Lagavulin and Ardbeg that have grown to define the category. In much the same way, fans of peated whiskey looking to explore smokier Irish whiskeys would fare well to have Connemara on their bar. If you’ve previously enjoyed Lagavulin’s Nick Offerman edition, for instance, Connemara deserves a place on your bar.
Powers Gold Label
Powers is a name not often recognized by folks looking for a pour of Irish whiskey. A direct upgrade for your St. Patrick’s day celebration, Gold Label is creamy and smooth and shows its versatility as a celebratory shot, cocktail workhorse or a smooth sipper for those neat or on-the-rock pours. Priced right in line with other inexpensive bottlings, Powers is a marked step up that you can find on any bar shelf all year round.
Redbreast 21 Year old
Last but certainly not least is a bottling of incredible Irish whiskey fit for celebrating the holiday in style. While certainly not cheap, it demonstrates an excellent value for a bottling of this age. It’s tough to find well-aged Irish malts, especially for a steal, and Redbreast’s 21 Year bottling is a heavy hitter that will wow even the most discerning whiskey drinkers.
All in all, the world of Irish whiskey is far from narrow, and stylistically, it’s a diverse category of often delicious releases made up of different ages and flavor profiles. Whether you’re hoping to branch out into something for a celebratory shot, a pour on the rocks at the bar or you want to mix up an Irish-backed cocktail, Teeling and Powers definitely have your back.
Unique whiskeys such as Connemara, Redbreast and Jameson Caskmates deliver solid sippers, adventures in bold flavors or a celebratory bottling you and your St. Patrick’s Day guests will never forget.
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