Redbreast 12-year-old

Redbreast 12-year-old & Cask Strength

Redbreast is one of the several brands that are distilled and matured in New Midleton Distillery, near Cork. New? Yes, as the original Midleton Distillery was founded in 1825, but was closed in the 1960s as their owners, the Cork Distilleries Company, merged with John Power & Son, John Jameson & Son in 1966 to form the Irish Distillers Group in 1966. They decided to group all their production in a single distillery, built at Midleton as it was the only site with room for expansion. Amongst the brands made at Midleton, the most famous are Jameson, Redbreast, and the Spot (Blue, Yellow, Red…) range. And on the menu today, three 12-year-old Redbreast whiskeys, as we’ll try the classic Redbreast 12-year-old and two different batches of Redbreast 12-year-old Cask Strength.

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Yamazaki core range

Yamazaki Distiller’s Reserve, 12yo and 18yo

Yamazaki Distillery is where it all began for whisky in Japan. I’ve written before about Masataka Taketsuru, who went to Scotland to study how whisky was made, then would help Shinjiro Torii create in 1923 the first whisky distillery in Japan: Yamazaki. Located near Kyoto, the distillery sits in a quiet place, surrounded by nature and greenery, and with excellent quality water, required to make whisky. Whilst it was founded in 1923, Yamazaki was released as a single malt only in 1984. Though I couldn’t book a tour (already full) when I went there, back in 2018, I could, however, visit the museum, which is free, and features more than 7.000 bottles in its whisky library. I’ll show you around, and then we’ll review the Yamazaki Distiller’s Reserve, the 12-year-old and the 18-year-old.

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Glendronach 12yo Original Previ Import

Glendronach 12yo Original Previ Import

A little late as I was on a business trip, the 8th dram from the whisky calendar was coming from Scotland, and more specifically from the Highland. But as many of the drams since the beginning of this calendar made us travel around the world, this time we’re time travelling. And not back to the future, but errr. to back to the future. Wait what? Well, read on and you’ll understand. Then I’ll review this Glendronach 12yo Original Previ Import.

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Glen Spey 12yo Flora & Fauna

Glen Spey 12yo Flora & Fauna

Glen Spey is an important producer of whisky used in the world-famous J&B blended Scotch whisky. J&B is the 3rd biggest (not best, biggest) blend in the world, with a mind-blowing 6 million cases sold worldwide each year, though in decline from 64 million bottles in 2008. Glen Spey, located in Speyside in Rothes, is also one of the most anonymous distilleries in Scotland, as there are almost no single malt offerings. In 1878, James Stuart & Co founded the distillery and it became under English ownership in 1887 as it was bought by W&A Gilbey. Then in 1962, W&A Gilbey combined with United Wine Traders to create International Distillers & Vintners (IDV). Finally, a few changes of ownership later, Grand Metropolitan bought IDV and in 1997, Guinness and Grand Metropolitan merged to form Diageo. With a 1.4 million lpa capacity, Glen Spey is the third-smallest distillery from Diageo, only followed by Royal Lochnagar and Oban.

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