Greenore - 8 Year Old Single Grain Irish Whiskey

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Greenore 8 Year Old Single Grain Irish WhiskeyIt is rare that whiskey is bottled as a single grain rather than be whisked away to be blended with malt whiskies, and it is this rarity that sets Greenore apart from the crowd. Distilled at the Cooley distillery in Ireland, Greenore is produced from 93% corn and aged for 8 years in first-fill bourbon barrels. This gives it a very distinctive taste, somewhere between a Scotch whisky and an American bourbon. It is however curious that the product is marketed as a "single grain" whiskey, when the remaining 7% of the mash bill is malted barley.

Cooley justifies their single grain statement by pointing out that the malted barley is only present to assist with the fermentation process, and that it does not affect the flavour in any way. While I find this a bit doubtful, Ireland doesn't have a regulatory body that defines specific whiskey labelling statements, so while perhaps a touch deceiving, they are within their rights to label this product as such.
Nose: The nose is very sweet with vanilla, fresh buttered corn and pencil eraser. Fresh and clean, there are definitely hints of bourbon here.

Palate: Oily and thick, Greenore's corn origins pop on the palate. Soft vanilla and fresh oak provide a light yet full flavour. There is a touch of what I can only describe as soapiness which is present at the back of the palate, ever so slightly detracting from the overall taste.

Finish:  Sweet, yet airy with a hint of nutmeg appearing at the last moment.

Overall: A great whiskey for it subtlety and smoothness - this is not just a novelty single grain, one of actual quality. An 8 year old single malt would most definitely be overly harsh and unremarkable, but a single grain has proven an easier beast to tame, and well tamed it is. Available in extremely limited quantities at the LCBO and decently priced at $58.95, act fast and pick up a bottle - you won't regret it.

1 Comment

It is indeed a good whisky. But do not fret too much on the single grain mention, as pretty much all of so called grain whisky will in fact contain malted barley to provide the enzymes to start the fermentation. Even most american corn whiskey will add malted corn and barley to their mashbill.

I'd rather have them do that then use lab created enzymes ;)

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