Irish whiskey galore: how to keep up with the constant flow of new offerings

John Wilson: Whiskey Live Dublin is a great chance to get to grips with the bamboozling breadth of choice

Are you bewildered by the constant issue of new Irish whiskeys? Barely a week goes past without a new release from one of the distillers, sometimes featuring a finish in some sort of wine cask, made from different mashes, or given smoky flavours from peat. A lot of them are very expensive, too.

If you want to have whiskey explained and to discover the difference between a pot still and single malt whiskey (or whisky, if not Irish) it might be worth paying a visit to Whiskey Live Dublin. This will take place in the RDS, in Dublin 4, on Friday and Saturday, May 19th and 20th. There are two sessions each day. Tickets are €44 excluding booking fee, and can be booked at and Masterclasses cost €10 (excluding booking fee) each and should be purchased before the day. As well as tastings, topics will include whiskey cocktails and food pairings.

The Teeling 15-year-old featured here has been aged for 14 years in former bourbon casks followed by 12 months in former sauvignon casks. One of a series of limited releases from Bushmills, the Pomerol Causeway Collection was aged in bourbon and oloroso sherry casks before being finished in barrels used to age Pomerol wine in Bordeaux.

The Celtic Cask series are limited release whiskeys aged for Celtic Whiskey Shop on Dawson Street. This single cask release, Daichead a Trí, was aged for its final year in PX sherry casks. As Gaeilgeoirí will know, this is the 43rd release. Just 199 bottles were produced.


Dunville’s is made by Echlinville Distillery on the Ards peninsula. The whiskey featured here is based on their award-winning single cask, which won whiskey of the year at the Irish Whiskey Awards earlier this year. It is not cheap but this is an exceptional whiskey, aged in sherry casks.

All four of the distilleries featured here will have a stand at Whiskey Live. Otherwise look out in your local specialist off-licence or online for these new or recent releases.

Teeling 15 Year Old Vintage Grain Irish Whiskey

50%, €110

Powerful and smooth with layers of vanilla spice and dried fruits.

Bushmills Pomerol 2012- Causeway Collection

54%, €115

Mellow with soft red fruits, apples, vanilla and dried citrus peel.

Celtic Cask Daichead a Trí 2003 PX Finish

48.45%, €150

Orchard fruits with musky spice, subtle raisins and prunes.

Dunville’s 21 Year Old Palo Cortado Cask

46%, €240

A complex, very textured whiskey with intricate layers of old wood, figs, orange peel and a lovely lingering finish.