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Wednesday, 2 October 2013


Howdy! Apologies for our apparent absence for the last week, but clearly B.B.F or ('Breaking Bad Fever') has taken over the Caskstrength office and we simply couldn't do anything else in the meantime in the run up to the grand finale...  

In fact, now it's all over, a light seems to have gone out in our world... Fortunately soon to be filled by the announcement of our very exciting new whisky release in the A-Z Caskstrength & Carry On series.   

Think 'D'... 

Think 3D...

Then be afraid... Be very afraid. Stay tuned to for more updates and announcements and remember: 

7/11/13 is 3D Day... @3DWhisky

But back to business. September has proven to be a terrific month for whisky events and new releases and fortunately, we've been hanging around a few of them (Breaking Bad permitting)

First up was the wonderful Cutty Sark Cargo event on the 12th September, held in Shoreditch, an area hipper and a Hip Hop Hippo in expensive sneakers and a chunky gold chain.   

Cutty Cargo was the first of its kind and a breakthrough moment for this highly regarded blended whisky;  Build a giant cargo crate in a cool location, fill it with very cool stuff: soulful dance artist Jessie Ware, DJ Duke Dumont, performance theatre, a secret speakeasy room guarded by a spiv, cocktails from 69 Colebrooke Row, a burlesque show and sliders, courtesy of hip London restaurant Meat Liquor.  

Oh, all this and 200 happy people, lashings of Cutty Sark over ice and mixers, shots with craft beers and suddenly, you have a blended whisky that's playing in a very different space to most others.  

Cutty has never professed to follow the pack and resort to Scottish traditions, heather and weather and a lingering walk from a lone piper. It was innovative, groundbreaking and contemporary back in 1923 and in its current guise, is still by far the best at breaking down the barriers to blended Scotch whisky that exist in the minds of younger people, which are easily pole vaulted by the white spirits category... 

Cutty Cargo was a test event and we hope to see this coming to many other cities globally in future.  The future's bright. The future's yellow and ship-shaped. 

Last week saw another pivotal moment in the rise of single potstill Irish whiskey, with the release of Redbreast 21 year old, the oldest expression in the Redbreast family and certainly the whiskey that puts aged Irish whiskey firmly in the hearts and minds of those who have criminally overlooked the spirit. 

The 21 year old is the 9th edition to the Single Pot Still range that Irish Distillers have created (which includes, Green and Yellow Spots, Powers John's Lane and Barry Crockett Legacy) and we were lucky enough to be hosted by master blender for Irish Distillers Billy Leighton, who demonstrated the considerable delights of the new whiskey next to the 12 year old and classic 15 year old. The 21 year old is again a mixture of malted and unmated barley, matured in both American oak and first fill oloroso sherry casks.  

Redbreast - 21 year Old -  46% 

Nose: Stupendously fruity on the first nosing, with notes of fresh vanilla, mango, passion fruit, kiwi, ripe bananas and coconut. Dig a little deeper and you'll find some drier spices, some subtle oak tones and a richer, darker caramel.  

Palate: The fruit and vanilla dominate here, with the tropical notes from above leading a trio of orchard fruits (plums, green apples and wine stewed conference pear)  The mouthfeel is fat and buttery, with a superb golden syrup note coating the tongue, before the woody spice of clove and cinnamon get their wicked way with you.

Finish: Lingering and dry, with lighter fruit notes on the death.

Overall: We've featured Irish whiskey a lot over the last month, with the Midleton Housewarming event, a truly terrific Teeling Silver Series 21 year old (which has more fruit than Carmen Miranda's head dress) and this just adds to the tally of greatness coming from the emerald isle.