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The Waterford Cuvée Koffi




Whiskey Review: The Waterford Cuvée Koffi

Tasting Notes:

Marries Irish single malt whiskeys from two dozen farms, which have been aging in a combination of American and French oak; bottled at 50% ABV and priced at $89.99.
The whiskey in the glass reflects a nice amber-golden color that’s lighter in scope. Legs and viscosity are both well-defined.
Rich and pure are the first things coming to mind regarding the aroma, reflecting notes of bread, caramel, honey, peach, and heather.
There’s a nice dash of honey and earthiness on the initial palate intake, joined by some slight spice, caramel, baked bread, edible flowers, apricot pie, and vanilla.
This has a nice sweetness on the finish, driven by a slight hint of spice that finishes together equally quickly.
An interesting animal in the exploration of Irish whiskey terroir, this expression is well-rounded and balanced overall. With this one, the whole is perhaps greater than simply the sum of its parts.
The Waterford Cuvée Koff review
We review The Waterford Cuvée Koffi, a mix of Irish single malt whiskeys, each of which is distilled from the barley of a single Irish farm. (image via Waterford)

Editor’s Note: This whiskey was provided to us as a review sample by the party behind it. Per our editorial policies, this in no way influenced the outcome of this review. 

The Irish whiskey scene, like the American, is defined in part by a mix of traditional larger brands and a newer crop of craft-style outlets. One of these younger distilleries, Waterford Whisky, was founded by Scotch industry veteran Mark Reyneir, formerly of the forward-thinking Bruichladdich distillery. Exploration of terroir was a big concept at Bruichladdich, and it is something Reyneir brought with him to Waterford.

The Waterford focus on terroir takes it down to the granular, producing whiskeys exploring the barley of individual farms that partner with the whiskey maker to provide grains. As an expansion of this, the brand recently introduced a “cuvee” concept, which marries together matured whiskeys from these single-origin expressions into a “the whole – greater than simply the sum of its parts” idea.

“The natural progression of our unique terroir mission was to follow in the footsteps of the legendary Grand Vins of Bordeaux or the Grande Marques of Champagne, and that is to create our flagship cuvées,” said Reynier at the time of its release. “Our new creative Cuvée Concepts, where we layer together uniquely flavorsome Single Farm Origins, help us to great our most complex, expressive, and profound whiskies.”

Today’s Offering

Three Cuvée Concepts have been introduced to the United States to form the basis of this new core range. Each one is described as bringing “a new dynamic to the distillery’s trademark barley-forward profile.”

The one being reviewed here today is The Waterford Cuvée Koffi. Noted as the flagship expression of the range, it is the distillery’s oldest expression to date at six years of age. It marries Irish single malt whiskeys from two dozen farms, which have been aging in a combination of American and French oak (36% first fill U.S., 17% virgin U.S., 21% “premium” French, 26% vin doux naturel). Free of artificial coloring and chill-filtration, it is bottled at 50% ABV and priced at $89.99.

Nino Kilgore-Marchetti

Nino Kilgore-Marchetti is the founder of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and provided tasting input on many whiskeys at competitions. He also maintains a large private collection of whiskey from which he continually educates his palate on this brown spirit type.

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