We enjoy a green beer or a green bagel as much as any other St. Patrick’s Day reveler. But unlike these so called “Irish delicacies” we love drinking Irish whiskey on both holidays and during the rest of the year. We’re not alone. Over the last 15 years, whether neat, on the rocks or mixed with ginger ale, Americans have had an unquenchable thirst for the usually smooth and honeyed whiskey. Sales were up by more than 10 percent last year alone. Particularly impressive since not that long ago there were only a handful of Irish brands available in the US. Here are three more recent immigrants from the Emerald Isle. Please make them feel at home.
Knappogue Castle 1994 Master Distiller’s Private Selection ($105):
There are just 1,100 bottles of Knappogue Castle’s extremely-drinkable 1994 Master Distiller’s Private Selection. The boutique Irish whiskey brand has won acclaim for its line of vintage single malts and this special bottling is no exception. The whiskey is light enough to have before dinner but has enough flavor that you can drink it all night.
Powers 12-Year-Old Special Reserve ($35):
Powers is one of the oldest Irish whiskies and, while it may not have the name recognition of its sister brand Jameson, the brand new 12-Year-Old Special Reserve is definitely worth drinking. The complex whiskey is aged in former bourbon casks and has bold spice notes with a touch of sweetness.
Tullamore Dew 10-Year-Old Single Malt ($40):
For the first time in its 180 year history, Tullamore Dew is releasing a single malt whiskey that is distilled just twice. (The rest of its whiskies are triple-distilled and are blends.) The rich 10-year-old is also unique since it has been aged in casks that have previously held bourbon, sherry, madeira and port.