The House of Camus launches an Irish whiskey


Cognac producer Camus has unveiled a project to make an Irish whiskey, using old cognac barrels with ex-bourbon casks blended and aged on an Irish island.
Lambay whiskey takes its name from the island off the Irish coast near Dublin, which is owned by the Baring family, of Baring Bank fame.
The whiskey was unveiledbut it will be formally launched at the TFWA travel retail/duty free show in Cannes in October. It comprises a blend and a single malt, both 40% abv.
The suggested retail prices are €25-30 and €45-50 respectively.
The young spirit (4YO for the small batch blend and 7YO for the unpeated single malt) comes from West Cork Distillers. Camus master blender Patrick Leger, then blends the whiskeys and the casks are left on the island to marry and age.
The company has experienced the effects of a maritime climate on the ageing process through its Île de Ré Fine Island Cognac. Leger said that ageing close to the sea means more alcohol than volume is lost than in a ‘dry’ cellar and apart from possible salty notes, the humidity gives a roundness to the spirit.
Both Camus CEO, Cyril Camus and Leger were at great pains to stress that the whiskey is still “work in progress” but the three-year project is in its “final stages”.
Just as Lambay island is privately owned and strictly by invitation only, both parties see Lambay whiskey as a limited edition, luxury, bespoke product for discerning palates.
Camus said there are no immediate plans to build a distillery on the island but growing barley on the island and using it for distillation is a possible long term plan.

An article from Drinks International by Christian Davis


The Pearse Lyons Distillery will Open its Doors to the Public this September (Ireland)


Dublin’s newest addition to a new generation of premium boutique distilleries is the Pearse Lyons Distillery at St. James. Located in the heart of The Liberties in Dublin 8, it will open its doors to the public in September.
The property was acquired by Pearse and Deirdre Lyons in 2013. Deirdre, director of corporate image and design, pointed out that Pearse’s family has strong ties to the area. Originally from Dublin, Pearse holds a Ph.D. in yeast fermentation and was the first Irishman to receive a formal degree in brewing and distilling from the British School of Malting and Brewing. “Five generations on his mother’s side, the Dunnes, traded as coopers — it was in the DNA, if you like”, Deirdre said.
After working for Irish Distillers, he moved to the US in 1977 and in 1999, Pearse purchased the Lexington Brewing and Distilling Company in Kentucky.
He’s now bringing the know-how acquired in Kentucky back to Ireland, and has expressed his interest in becoming part of a whiskey trail in Dublin. Deirdre pointed out that the potential for job creation is “huge” and that the region’s rich distilling history makes it ideal for such initiative.
An investment of over €20 million has been dedicated to this project. “Restoration costs, additional facilities, distillery equipment, artworks and our new glass spire, which we have named The Liberties Lantern, has pushed the cost”, explains Deirdre.
Founder Pearse Lyons added that the new distillery and visitor centre “will showcase the history of distilling in Dublin’s Liberties. Visitors will have the opportunity to witness, smell, taste and learn all about the process of distilling Pearse Irish Whiskey.” They are expecting to host up to 75,000 visitors per year.

An article from The Taste

Ireland Takes Home 3 Gold Medals from the International Wine & Spirit Competition


The quality of Irish drinks was acknowledged with 66 medals including 3 Gold at the International Wine & Spirit Competition 2017. Currently on its 48th edition, the IWSC was created by wine chemist Anton Massel, who in 1969 had the idea of creating a wine and spirit competition which based not just on organoleptic judgement but where all entries also had to undergo chemical analysis.
Tullamore Dew 12 YO Special Reserve was highlighted with an Outstanding Gold Medal. Two other spirits received Gold medals as well: Blackwater No. 5 Gin, a London Dry gin made by the Blackwater Distillery and Teeling Whiskey Single Malt Irish Whiskey, a no- age statement single malt made by the Teeling Whiskey Company.
A total of nine spirits received Outstanding Silver Medals: Dundalgan Special Reserve Charred Cask Irish Whiskey, Jameson Round Irish Whiskey, Midleton Barry Crockett Legacy, Powers John’s Lane Release, Slane Irish Whiskey, Teeling Whiskey Company – Spirit of Dublin Poitín, Teeling Whiskey White Burgundy Single Cask Single Malt Irish Whiskey, Thin Gin and Tullamore Dew 18 YO.
The honour of more Silver was given to 42 alcoholic drinks including well known bottles from big brands such as Irish Distiller’s Yellow Spot 12 YO, Tullamore DEW’s blended no age statement whiskey, Paddy Irish Whiskey, Redbreast 12 YO Single Pot Still, Midleton Very Rare and Jameson Caskmates; as well as bottles from medium and boutique distilleries both established and recent including Listoke 1777 Small Batch Irish Gin, Bonac 24 Gin, Aldi’s Boyles Premium Small Batch Irish Gin and Deluxe Irish Cream Liqueur.

An article from The Taste


For more than 200 hundred years, the humble town of Kilbeggan produced a whiskey beloved the world over. As Ireland’s oldest licensed distillery since 1757, Kilbeggan has always been more than just a stone building with a water wheel to power it and its copper pot stills. It has been the townspeople’s heart and soul, their pride and joy.
Today, the town of Kilbeggan celebrates the announcement of another beloved whiskey: Kilbeggan® Single Grain Irish Whiskey. Released in the U.S. this month, the newest addition to the Kilbeggan Distilling Company offers a premium whiskey for enthusiasts and bartenders alike.
When Prohibition in the U.S. and other factors contributed to the shuttering of Kilbeggan Distillery’s doors, the residents banded together to save the whiskey that defined their town. They pooled funds to pay for the distillery license and put in years of hard work, late nights and weekends to restore it until eventually the distillery came back to life and its stills were once again filled. Every bottle of Kilbeggan, an original Irish whiskey built on the strong bond between the town that birthed it and the distillery producing it, is proof that their spirit has never left. It is the townspeople’s dedication to honoring the whiskey-making traditions of the past while creating a better future that inspired the creation of Kilbeggan Single Grain. It can be said that this is a single grain made by a proud many.
“The passion and dedication that the citizens of Kilbeggan put into keeping this distillery alive is truly inspirational,” says John Cashman, Beam Suntory Global Brand Ambassador, Irish Whiskey. “Kilbeggan Single Grain is born out of this resilience and we are proud to offer a whiskey to be enjoyed by all – whether that’s as a traditional neat dram or in a modern craft cocktail. The folks at Kilbeggan Distilling Co. are happy to share it with you any way you like.”
The notion that “single grain” describes a whiskey made with just one grain is a common misperception. Rather, the term refers to whiskey made in a single location using malted barley and at least one other grain. Kilbeggan Single Grain is made of 94% meticulously-sourced corn plus 6% malted barley.
Distilled at 86 proof, Kilbeggan Single Grain is a delicate spirit that absorbs the flavors of the casks in which it is aged. After aging in ex-bourbon barrels, it is finished in a marriage of ex-bourbon and various fortified wine barrels. It possesses Irish whiskey’s trademark versatility and smoothness, making it the ideal for modern or classic cocktails, like a Whiskey Sour, but with enough depth of flavor to be sipped neat.
“Kilbeggan enjoyed a tremendous heyday back in the 1800s when Irish whiskey was thriving and distilleries abounded, before the devastation to the industry that came with Prohibition and other challenges,” says Cashman. “A few years ago, I’m happy to say, the world rediscovered the beauty of Irish whiskey. And Kilbeggan once again is rising to the top and setting the standard through innovations like Kilbeggan Single Grain. We can’t wait to see a bottle on every bar, just like in the good old days.”
With the booming consumer interest in brown spirits, Irish whiskey has seen substantial growth over the last decade. Per the Distilled Spirits Council, the national trade association representing producers and marketers of distilled spirits sold in the U.S., Irish Whiskey volumes rose 18.7% in 2016 to 3.8 million cases and revenues were up an impressive 19.8% to $795 million. The Council reports that much of this growth is fueled by the rise of high-end and super premium Irish whiskeys, which grew an astounding 737% and 3,455%, respectively, since 2002.
The U.S. will be the first country in the world to introduce Kilbeggan Single Grain Irish Whiskey. Available beginning in late June 2017 with a suggested retail price of $29.99 (750ml), it joins the U.S. portfolio alongside Kilbeggan Irish Whiskey (40% ABV), an approachable, smooth blended whiskey that is still made using traditional methods. With the new expression, Kilbeggan Distilling Company’s portfolio now features several whiskeys that appeal to and are available across a variety of consumer targets, price tiers and whiskey occasions.

NOSE           Coconut cream, vanilla, jellied fruit and summer red berries
PALATE        Wafer-like biscuit sweetness, hazelnut and light spice with nice oak tannins drying on the side of the mouth
FINISH          Crisp and fruity, glazed cherries drying with a lingering spice

A Press Release from Beam Suntory