Tullamore D.E.W. : 12 Year Special Reserve (Irish Blended Whiskey: 12 Year: 40% ABV)
Visual: Clear light gold.
Viscosity: Mix of slow and fast medium thickness streaks.
Nose: Grain fields. Clean and soft. White bread. Floral. Very mild gingerbread.
Body: Smooth – no burn at all. Lime. Oak. Muted liquorice if held. Lemon. Brown bread. Light orange. Water makes more fruity and open.
Finish: Lightly oaken and clean alcohol. Lime cordial. Orange crème. Waters adds lime and cream.
Conclusion: This is a very light and very clean whisky – very pure, very easy to pour down the neck. No burn and an effortless character to it. Or, as I call it, a whisky very specifically designed to be aimed at people who are not me.
I mean, I am not saying it is a bad whiskey – by far the opposite. It does what it sets out to do very well – delicious light citrus notes in a sprit so light that the flavours seem to float on your tongue in its absence. But that is its advantage for some, and the issue for me – there is no weight to it, and without that it cannot move me.
Now I can see why a lot of people who don’t traditionally like whiskey would like this – it keeps the flavour but removes a lot of the harsh edges that can put people off. With it being so light I was a little nervous about adding water, what if it vanished completely?
Water actually helped, the lemon notes became more full – almost like lemon curd rather than being so light as to be lost – somehow water managed to make it bigger but not harsher. There I will give it its due, here there is just enough weight to the citrus building up that it becomes what would be on the lighter end of what I consider an easy sipping whiskey. Now it is not going to become a favourite for me, but that is just because my tastes don’t go that way.
So I tried adding a tad more water. It killed it dead. Ooops.
So, a whiskey for these who normally don’t like whiskey, or for those who prefer the gentle end of the spectrum, and if taken with water, one for a gentle break for the rest of us.
Background: Yes, it is from the Master’s Of Malt Whisky Calendar again. So, bias warning time again! “Ok, bias warning first: This is a part of the Masters Of Malt Whisky Calendar given to The Bath Whisky and Rum Club, part of Independent Spirit, who invited me to assist with the notes in return for uploading them to alcohol and aphorisms. Sounded a very fair deal to me. Also, due to this we each only had half of the 3cl bottle so thoughts are based on a smaller exploration than usual. On the other hand I could not say no to the chance to try so many new whiskies. Many thanks!” this time however it is Irish Whiskey – so a bit different. Triple distilled, Irish Whiskey tends to be smoother than its Scottish cousins. This was drunk while listening to a few OCRemix tracks, including this remix of the classic Dynamite Headdy tracks. That game was cool.