Origin: Dublin (Ireland)
Type: Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey
Ageing casks: Virgin Portoguese Oak
Additional coloring: No
Owner: Teeling Whiskey Company
Average price: € 90.00
Official website: teelingwhiskey.com
One of Teeling’s hallmarks is its constant search for new roads in the maturation process of its whiskey, taking advantage of the greater flexibility granted by the Irish specification than its Scottish cousins.
And March 2022 saw the birth of the Wonders of Wood Series (WoW for short), a series of bottlings that emphasises the casks chosen for maturation, beginning with an ageing in virgin chinquapin (or chinkapin) wood casks, a type of oak that grows in North America, continuing in June this year with this second release also matured in virgin casks but of Portuguese oak.
A wood that is rarely used by coopers, chosen in this case for the high presence of tannins that, according to them, harmonise well with their pot still, i.e. a distillate produced from malted and unmalted barley, which Teeling chooses to use in equal proportions, obviously with triple distillation.
For each bottling in the series, the distillery works with the Tree Council of Ireland to reforest an area of woodland in the Glencree region of Wicklow by planting Irish oak trees.
Lots of sweetness on the nose, to which the spices give a Nordic pastry soul, with ginger and cinnamon intruding on the soft pastry with nuts (walnuts, almonds), baked apple, sultanas, in short, a nice strudel accompanied by caramel cream and coffee candies. Along the length, a rich woody and vegetal vein tends to emerge.
The evocation of coffee is the preeminent one on the palate, in which the sweet aspect drops in tone to the point of becoming almost imperceptible in favour of a greater presence of tannins that make it drier and more astringent. The vegetal aspect expands with spices veering towards pepper and ginger with a touch of nutmeg, with good alcoholic warmth that warms the soul.
Medium-long finish in which the vegetal and spicy tones dominate, with wood and a lot of dryness.
A pity, for although the nose had no great complexity, it promised a pleasant and invigorating dram that I didn’t find in the mouth, where the whole appears frayed and little incisive, with lots of barrel and little substance.
I applaud the constant research (and environmental commitment), but this one doesn’t work for me.