The Tyrconnell 10 year old Madeira Cask Finish, 46%
Irish | $80
Complex on the nose, and the flavors just dance on the palate. This whiskey is bright, cleanly malty, and quite fruity with a tropical accent -- peach, mango, cantaloupe, sultana, and caramelized pineapple. Balanced by notes of honey, vanilla cream, and soft coconut. The best Cooley whiskey I have ever tasted!
Tyrconnell 16 year old Oloroso & Moscatel Cask Finished, 46%
Irish Single Malt | $100
Sweet sherry with a heady spring floral intensity, lemon, honey, and graham crackers, yet delicate as a dandelion seed in a summer breeze. The palate is seductively sweet, with honey, effervescent lemon sherbet, caramel, and spices, showing a little more of the wine, fruit, and hints of citrus. Distinctively different, the finish is initially drying, then the fruit returns with a grapefruit peel sharpness. Terrifically good dram. (18,000 bottles) Editors’ Choice
The Tyrconnell, 10 year old, Port Cask Finish, 46%
Irish | $80.00
Deeper, thicker, and more lush than the Madeira Cask Finish reviewed above. Notes of strawberry preserve, caramel apple, nougat, sponge cake, and a hint of chocolate cream pie. All these sweet, richly textured flavors without being cloying. Nicely done.
Most Irish whiskey consumed in the U.S. is blended, and Ireland’s single pot still whiskeys enjoy a cult following. However, Irish single malts, including Tyrconnell 16 year old, are often unfairly overshadowed by their Scottish neighbors. This limited-edition whiskey, made entirely with Irish barley, is double distilled in pot stills like most scotch, then aged in bourbon barrels. Tyrconnell is named for a racehorse, but this whiskey is slow and steady: it’s soft and gentle, yet full-flavored, with warming vanilla, graham cracker, and citrus notes, and rounded spice. Though it may not be as brash as some scotch malts, this thoroughbred is able to go the distance. Number 16 in the 2017 Top 20
The Tyrconnell 10 year old Sherry Cask Finish, 46%
Irish Single Malt | $75
On the nose there are warm, grassy tones wrapped in a blanket of sherry, apple, and sultanas, with a tickle of fine white pepper, lemongrass, scented balms, and poppy seed cake. In the mouth there is apple, cherry, and honey nougat, backed by richer sherry fruits. The flavor develops steadily, with late additions of pepper coinciding with a confluence of sweetness and sherry notes. Baked apple sweetness on the finish.
Whiskeys made from 100% Irish barley are not abundant, so at sweet sixteen, there is much to celebrate about this grown-up version of Tyrconnell. Honey, pear, crème brûlée, clementine peel, tinned peach, and pencil shavings on the nose. Citrus, candied peel, lemon, and grapefruit mingle among the sweetness, but it’s anchored by layered spices and rounds out with a finish of juicy spiced oranges and peach. Moreish and delicious.
Repackaged at a higher strength, the nose is grassy, with lemon zest, hints of apple and pear, vanilla seeds, almonds, and fresh florals. Light honey and summer fruits, barley notes, and vanilla, becoming juicier over time with base notes of whole spice, before serving up a lemon-and-honey lozenge finish. Very assured, this double-distilled single malt is a must for your Irish whiskey shelf. Best Value
The Tyrconnell 15 year old Madeira Cask Finish, 46%
Irish Single Malt | $100
Honey, baklava, lemongrass, artichoke, vanilla, herbal stems, and Turkish delight make for a thought-provoking glass of whiskey. Sipping reveals a gentle, fruity delight; this is silky smooth and packed with dried fruits, mango, papaya, vanilla, light caramel, pleasant spices, and as it unwinds, it oozes honey and sweetness. As the honey and peppery spices fade on the finish, a hint of mint appears.
Tropical in nature, with pineapple, coconut, and kiwi. Additional notes of vanilla, caramel, new-mown hay, and light marzipan. Creamy on the palate throughout. A lovely whiskey, but the two finished versions above have it beat.
Comparatively speaking, the aromas of red apple, peppercorn, baked ham, and rowanberry make it the least enticing nose in the Tyrconnell range, although the port cask endows a beautiful delicate blush to the whiskey’s color. The mouthfeel is thinner too, with red apple, watermelon, mouth-drawing oak, fruit chews, and burnt spices in the end. A redeeming finish, however, the gums tingling delightfully with fruit and spice.