Irish Distillers has unveiled the highly collectible Midleton Very Rare Vintage Release 2021 for the United States, following its initial release overseas earlier this year.
The 38th edition in the Midleton Very Rare series is described by the brand as a blend of rare and hand-selected single pot still and single grain Irish whiskies from Midleton’s extensive inventory, including whiskey aged between 15 and 36 years and matured in lightly charred ex-bourbon American oak barrels. The official tasting notes speak of baked orchard fruits, lime zest and kiwi, perfectly rounded off with mild pot still spices and soft waves of vanilla from the exceptional bourbon casks.
Drawing on his experience in both distillation and maturation, Master Distiller Kevin O’Gorman, in his first time working on this release, elevated the grain whiskey contribution for the 2021 vintage to create a delicate and elegant whiskey and selected a mix of first-fill and second-fill casks to enhance the wood contribution while allowing the pot still component to express itself.
“It is an honor to join my predecessors in bringing the Midleton Very Rare collection to life,” O’Gorman said in a prepared statement. “The process has allowed me to explore our rarest casks to create an exceptional blend that builds on tradition while bringing a new dimension and we’re thrilled to bring this release to our customers in the US.”
Official tasting notes can be found below.
Aroma: Opens with a delicate floral perfume closely followed by roasted coffee beans, salted caramel and honeycomb coming to the fore. Hints of nectarines that linger in the background evolve over time along with freshly grated ginger and nutmeg spice. The American oak provides structure throughout, ranging in depth from fresh woodland notes to aged charred oak.
Taste: Baked orchard fruits with a touch of lime zest and kiwi. Mild pot still spices continue to build along with soft waves of vanilla, sweet coffee liqueur and cocoa powder. The texture initially round and full, gains additional wood spices with a delicate touch of clove oil and nutmeg adding a mild heat, giving balance to the sweetness.
Finish: Lingering finish with the pot still spices and soft fruits eventually fading, allowing the oak to have the final say, highlighting the many years of maturation.