Whiskey Review: Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey

, | March 16, 2022

Editor’s Note: This whiskey was provided to us as a review sample by Proclamation Whiskey. 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 towards the bottom of this review our site receives a small referral payment which helps to support, but not influence, our editorial and other costs.

What do chocolate and French wine have to do with Irish whiskey? For the folks behind the Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey, it’s the unique backgrounds of the founder, Stephen Cope, and master blender, Paul Caris. One year after the successful launch of Grace O’Malley Blended Irish Whiskey, Stephen Cope, founder of Lir Chocolates; and master blender Paul Caris, former winemaker, released the Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey. The brand is named in honor of the Easter Proclamation, the proclamation for Irish independence from the United Kingdom. Per the Irish Times, Cope took pains to recreate the feel of the original document on the label, which from a typographical standpoint was known for its mixed fonts on the letter “E.” The result is bold packaging that, much like the liquid inside, in no way hides that it’s an Irish whiskey.

From a marketing perspective, the pandemic dampened the launch. Mid-2020 was a tough year to premier a new label (and certainly a difficult time in so many ways). Although at-home imbibing saw an uptick, duty-free sales and drinking in bars and restaurants plummeted. Despite the difficulties, Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey received positive reviews and a trio of Gold awards from international competitions and has attained wide distribution in Ireland, Europe, and the United States.

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Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey is a more entry-level tipple than its sister label, crafted from a blend of Irish grains. In the Irish Times and across press releases, founder Stephen Cope describes the Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey as an “entry-level product that has been aged in new American oak barrels and matured in bourbon casks. The blend includes a touch of sherry-finished malt to give a rounded, toasted finish.” The blend was distilled at The Great Northern Distillery in Dundalk, Ireland.

Cope’s admiration of Irish history is palpable. Given the savvy and world-wide appeal of his labels, I’m curious to see what’s next.

Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey review

Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey (image via Suzanne Bayard)

Tasting Notes: Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey

Vital Stats: Aged for a minimum of three years, triple distilled blend aged in new American oak barrels, ex-bourbon casks, with sherry-finished malt, 40.7% ABV, no mash bill given. SRP $29.99 per bottle.

Appearance: It is pale yellow in color with a golden-orange undertone.

Nose: The Proclamation Blended Irish Whiskey has scents of wildflower honey, toasted buckwheat, oatmeal cookies, and orange zest. With time in the glass, it shows notes of vanilla and a hint of char. The aromas are subtle.

Palate: It’s viscous in the mouth with a flavor of dried apples, charcoal, and vanilla. This gives way to a hint of green tropical fruits such as papaya and underripe star fruit. There’s not much depth of flavor; like the nose, it’s subtle. The finish offers up notes of dried apples. A splash of water seems to erase most aromas, leaving a vodka-like impression.

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Overall, this blended whiskey has a pleasant aroma but fails to leave much of a lasting impression. It’s not refined enough on its own and seems to disappear in mixed drinks, with water, or over ice. I think this would appeal to those transitioning from vodka or looking for an old school mixer that fades to the background.

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Suzanne Bayard

Suzanne Bayard struck out to the West Coast with her now husband almost a decade ago to explore the intersection of wine and policy in its world-class wine regions. She manages a Portland, OR bottle shop by day as the wine buyer and newsletter editor. She is also the Director...