Let’s get up close and personal with the exceptionally smooth single malt Irish whiskey of the Emerald Isle. It’s true that folks most often link “single malt” with Scotch Distilleries, but don’t let that fool you. Single malt Irish whiskey is worth your time, money, and experimentation. This particular taste of whiskey may be just what you’re looking for!
What Is Single Malt Irish Whiskey?
What’s all this single malt Irish business about? And how is the whiskey made? Let’s hop right into the definition.
Single malt Irish whiskey is made from 100 percent malted barley. That’s right: entirely crafted from barley! This type of whiskey is also produced in a single distillery using a pot still. It’s aged in oak for at least three years. It may be double- or triple-distilled.
It’s a seemingly simple mash, but it sets a high bar for the flavor that really packs a punch!
Those are the rules. They’re easy to memorize. And this spirit is so easy to love (if you don’t know it already). Either way, we’re glad you’re here, appreciating the foundational elements.
What Does This Whiskey Taste Like?
Because of the “all barley” recipe, you’ll get big cereal flavor. It’s common to experience notes of toffee, too. If you really dive into the single malt world, you’ll meet with many distinct secondary flavors and textures. But your base on which the rest of the subtleties are built will always be barley. And that benchmark cereal sweetness will be there forever.
How to Preserve That Flavor
Know what elegantly stores and preserves all this beloved barley? Our whiskey decanters. We’re serious. They also make great gifts and mementos for whiskey enthusiasts of all kinds.
If you’re extra curious about decanting and how it works, you may want to see our article on why whiskey evaporates.
Single Malt Irish Whiskey Brands
Two main brands or sources – Bushmills and Cooley – absolutely dominate the single malt Irish whiskey market. Even if you don’t see their brand on your bottle, it’s likely that they’re behind the scenes anyway. They supply new distilleries and many independent bottlers with the good stuff.
Bushmills is triple-distilled, while Cooley is double-distilled. If you don’t already know, typically, tripled-distilled means that you’ll get a smooth pour with a more subdued finish.
Bushmills uses unpeated malt. Cooley uses both unpeated and peated malt. Once again, as a reminder: peated malt brings smoky flavor, while the unpeated is free of all that famous (or infamous, depending on your preference) smoke.
Single Malt Irish Whiskey to Try
We actually share a few of Distiller’s favorite single malt Irish whiskeys, so have a look at their lineup here. These are ten bottles that bring a variety of flavors. There’s something for everyone, we feel.
Do you have a favorite single malt bottle you love? Pop down into the comments below, and share it with the Prestige community. We’d love to know what you love and try it ourselves (if we haven’t yet).
Cheers for the Emerald Isle!
Scotland isn’t the only place for delicious single malts. We salute the Emerald Isle and her single malt offerings! Enjoy a single malt Irish whiskey pour very soon. In fact, since we’re no one knows tomorrow, we suggest you get on this libation project today.