Editor’s Note: This whiskey was provided to us as a review sample by the party behind it. This in no way, per our editorial policies, influenced the final outcome of this review. It should also be noted that by clicking the buy link in this review our site receives a small referral payment which helps to support, but not influence, our editorial and other costs.
Northcross Irish Whiskey, crafted by The Great Northern Distillery located in Dundalk, County Louth, was formerly a storied brewery before closing and then re-opening as a distillery. This dual history creates a fun play between new and old that is exemplified in their production method as the distillery operates two types of stills; pot stills, and column stills, which allow for the production of a wide variety of Irish whiskey spirits, including Single Grain, Triple Malt, Double Malt, Peated Malt, and Pot Still Whiskey.
This is distinct from other Irish distilleries as the traditional method of Irish whiskey making only uses pot stills – just like the Scots – while column stills are a more modern invention that you will more commonly see in bourbon distilleries of the US.
The innovation of Northcross is also on full display with the featured bottle of this review: The Northcross Triple Wood, an Irish whiskey that is aged in barrels made from the staves of three different barrels: bourbon, sherry, and new/charred American oak. A fun exercise in flavor as they combine the left over flavors of the bourbon and sherry, while also incorporating the classic charred oak flavor you expect in an Irish whiskey.
It is also worth noting that The Great Northern Distillery is owned by John James Teeling, an accomplished Irish businessperson who has played a significant role in the Irish whiskey industry. Teeling is renowned for breaking the Irish Distillers monopoly by launching the Cooley Distillery and reviving the Kilbeggan Distillery after a 50-year hiatus.
Tasting Notes: Northcross Triple Wood Irish Whiskey
Vital Stats: Single Malt, Aged in a mixed Oak, Bourbon, and Sherry staved barrel. 43% ABV.
Appearance: Golden Maple Syrup Brown
Nose: Sweet and syrupy while a subtle biscuit, kind-of starchy flavor hangs around after the party.
Palate: Sweet and subtle, not much sherry juiciness, but an overall pleasant blend of bourbon and Irish whiskey flavors.
Whiskey Review: Northcross Irish Whiskey
Although I was excited to try the fun experiment brought to us with this Northcross triple wood, I was left still wanting more. I really enjoy the idea of playing with fun aging techniques and using funky barrels, and mixing staves. However, the final product is less interesting than its description. Not to say the the bottle is bad by any means, but I wish we were left with more juicy Sherry flavors and more of that distinct bourbon taste. Instead we have a nice, inoffensive, middle of the road whiskey.
The saving grace is that you can buy this bottle for $25 or under, so if you want something reliable and cheap, this is your bottle. If you want something funky and exciting go elsewhere.
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Born and raised in Portland, Oregon. I'm a former distiller at Jackson Hole Still Works in Wyoming. Fan of whiskey, golf, and especially whiskey and golf together.