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New Clonakilty Irish Whiskeys Finished In Beer Casks From American Breweries

Clonakilty Distillery, part of a younger generation of Irish whiskey distilleries aiming to put their mark in this category, has gone a rather interesting new route in this regard. What they’ve done around this with a recent series of new releases is partnering with select US breweries to create a range of limited edition cask finished whiskeys for the American market. 

These whiskeys are aged in casks that come from premium beers across the country, according to a recent statement from the companyThey started hitting America’s shores at the end of September, while some bottles will be for sale at the Irish distillery shop in Clonakilty. 

“Mother of All Storms” Barley Wine cask finish
“Mother of All Storms” Barley Wine cask finish (image via Clonakilty)

This line up, based upon information released from Clonakilty, includes:

Manor Hill (out now):

A “Baltic Porter” cask finish with 48.5% ABV, comes from a partnership with Manor Hill Brewing based in Maryland. The brewery works with the local land to fashion a range of aromatic, farmhouse-style beers. 

Their Baltic Porter is said to have hints of dark bitter chocolate, peach cobbler and licorice that create a smooth and well-rounded whiskey when paired with the leather and oak spice flavors of Clonakilty whiskey.

Official brand tasting notes: 

  • Nose: cocoa, peach cobbler and rich butter spices
  • Palette: dark chocolate, stone fruit and licorice 
  • Finish: leather and oak spices with bitter chocolate create a long finish

Pelican (out now):

“Mother of All Storms” Barley Wine cask finish with a 46% ABV comes from a partnership with Pelican Brewing based in Oregon.

The Clonakilty whiskey is finished in a Mother of all Storms ex-barley wine cask, which is said to bring out toasted oak, vanilla and toffee flavors with a hint of mixed spices and dried sultanas.

Official brand tasting notes:

  • Nose: warm spice, cut straw, clove, nutmeg, ground almond, vanilla
  • Palette: almond, barley, raisins, sultanas and leather
  • Finish: dried peels, mixed spice, straw and vanilla.

26 Degrees (early November):

The “IPA1A” cask finish is made with casks from Florida-based 26° Brewing’s IPA1A  and has 46% ABV.

26° Brewing’s IPA1A brings reported notes of ginger and zesty hops and leaves the aftertaste of rich dark chocolate and orange drizzle cake.

Official brand tasting notes:

  • Nose: satsuma mandarin, mint, ginger, creme brulee
  • Palette: candied ginger, floral hops, dark chocolate, orange and tangerine
  • Finish: orange drizzle cake, cocoa nibs, hops

Revival Brewing (end of November):

The “You Thirsty?” IPA cask finish from Revival Brewing based in Rhode Island and brings 43.6% ABV.

Revival’s “You Thirsty?” beer uses three times the hops and reportedly brings floral notes and a slightly bitter citrus finish to the whiskey.

Official brand tasting notes:

  • Nose: new world hops, mango, passionfruit, grapefruit, cut straw
  • Palette: floral hops, nettle, grapefruit, honey and lime
  • Finish: soft oak with dried limes and tangerine
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