Whiskey News: Midleton Release Most Expensive Irish Whiskey

Key Details

Whiskey Name: Midleton The Silent Distillery: Chapter One
Distillery: The Old Midleton Distillery
ABV: Unknown
Age:45 yrs
Type: Peated Single Malt
Website: https://www.midletonveryrare.com/en-EN/the1825room/sign-in
Price: €35,000

Today, Irish distillers unveiled the most expensive Irish whiskey ever. The previous title of ‘Most Expensive’ was attributed to J.J Corry / Whiskey Gate with what they dubbed ‘The Chosen’. Midleton must’ve looked at the €6,500 price tag and said “hold my whiskey”. Just over 3 months later, they produce this, Midleton The Silent Distillery: Chapter One with a heft price tag of €35,000.

The above picture I took while walking down the old Midleton Distillery maturation room, where they still mature casks, and where the Midleton 1825 members club casks are matured.

There will be a yearly release until 2025 with the whiskey ranging from 45 to 50 years of age. It’s no coincidence they are doing it until 2025, which would be the 200th anniversary of The Old Midleton Distillery being opened. What exactly is a Silent Distillery? A silent distillery is one that has shut its doors and no longer distils any spirit, leaving only previously unreleased, or experimental “unicorn” whiskies maturing in the cellars.

There will only be 44 bottles of this release and one can imagine that trend will continue throughout the full release.

The first chapter is a 45-year-old peated single Irish malt created by master distiller emeritus Max Crockett (Barry Crockett’s, Master Distiller 1981-2013, father) a year before the original distillery closed in 1974. It was part of a series of innovative trial batches, never repeated as one would imagine as there is no commercial releases of peated single malts from The Midleton Distillery (Jameson, RedBreast, Spot Whiskey, Powers, Paddy, Method and Madness). It is bottled in handblown Waterford Crystal decanters, each individually numbered, displayed in a wooden cabinet by Irish designer John Galvin.

Tasting notes provided by Brian Nation, current Master Distiller

Nose

The first impression is very rich with deep, dark spices on a satisfying antique oak base. An earthy note of freshly cut peat, along with chamois leather, is lifted by a twist of grapefruit. The very old sherry wine seasoned hogshead cask contributes a touch of ripe honeydew melon and red berries, as well as the sweet spices of toasted oak.

Taste

Instantly rich, with the initial peppery spices slowly softening as the influence of the malted barley shows through. Liquorice root, barley sugar and honey bring some sweetness, just given a little edge by a touch of sherbet, all build on a solid foundation of toasted oak.

Finish

The rich spices and malted barley are slow to fade.

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