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Bushmills 16 Year Old 3 Wood

Average score from 12 reviews and 33 ratings 85

Bushmills 16 Year Old 3 Wood

Product details

  • Brand: Bushmills
  • Bottler: Unknown
  • ABV: 40.0%
  • Age: 16 year old

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Bushmills 16 Year Old 3 Wood

It's a 50ml sample given by a friend, I forgot to ask when was the bottle opened. This whisky is triple-distilled single malt which is aged in three types of casks: oloroso, bourbon and port wine.

Nose: Fruity and slightly sweet. Dark fruit, raisin, dark chocolate, peanut butter and licorice.

Palate: Maple sugar, port, sherry, vanilla, cinnamon and spice. The flavors mixed well together, rich and sophisticated, tastes so smooth with moderate sweetness and a touch of tannin.

Finish: Syrup, raspberry ,barley and spice. Soft, clean and short.

Balance: For a 40% ABV whisky it is quite concentrated and complex, the port wood really delivers the fruity, winy and sweet flavors, and it tastes clean and less malty due to triple distillation.

Overall: A well-matured Irish whisky, round and enjoyable, the port cask's influence is very prominent. Lusher and rounder than Glenmorangie Quinta Ruban, Bushmill 16 yo is worth trying if you like wine cask finish, rum drinker might find this attractive too.

@mystycreek, in the "Irish good value for the money" and maybe reasonable availability (one hopes) I would also suggest Jameson Black Barrel. Prices for the Jameson premium products have gone way up recently, but Black Barrel remains fairly reasonably priced, at least here. I don't know whether it is sold in Taipei. Standard Jameson is very batch variable, and can be anything from quite good to downright bad. I never take a chance buying a bottle with that degree of batch variation, without having tasted from the exact batch in advance. So far I haven't tasted any bad Black Barrel. Can you get Connemara Cask Strength there? That's a good one. In the peated category, of course. Standard Connemara is a bit anemic. I used to have a nice Irish Whiskey Desert Island List, but that is currently in mothballs, aka Connosr data storage. Stuff like Jameson 12 yo and Gold are ones I usually like (batch variation I hear recently, though, in the Gold), but they have gotten pretty pricey. As with most around here, I am also very much a fan of both the CS and standard Redbreast 12 YOs...and Bushmills Black Bush.

@mystycreek, if you see it, the special edition Tullamore DEW Phoenix Limited Edition has quite a lot of "oomph" for an Irish blended whiskey. Bottling at 55% ABV has a lot to do with that. I am a big fan of that one.


Triple distilled and matured in three woods, American oak, Oloroso Sherry casks and finished in port pipes.

I’m sipping this malt in our newly constructed conservatory, and while the weather outside is frightful. The aromas from the amber liquor are competing with that of curing concrete but thankfully are winning the battle. The fortified wine influences (sherry and port) are evident in the aroma, but leave plenty of space for the other components which include butter, black current, blackberry, allspice and juniper. A really top class smell.

On the palate there is plenty of body carrying rich, fruity toasty flavours. The black current and blackberry combo from the aroma are still present and provide the main interest although other hints at complexity and the finish are rather smothered by bittersweet blanket. These kind of cask finish often leave me cold when analysed, although I enjoy them intensely when just drinking for enjoyment. I would like to try Bushmills at this age or a little older without the port pipe treatment to compare with the 10 year old, sadly this is lacking in the Bushmills standard range.


Bushmills 16 is a triple distilled, 40% abv, single malt irish whiskey. Aged sixteen years in both bourbon and sherry casks. Then, they marry those two and let them rest another six to nine months in port casks. The theory behind this process is to create a rich spirit with lots of complexity. I've been eyeing this SM for quite a while now. At a relatively affordable price ($58) and a sixteen year old, it seems like I'm getting a lot for my money. We shall see!

Nose: Vanilla, corn, sherry, toffee, lots of chocolate, nutmeg, all kind of intertwined with oak.

Palate: Feels very thin, almost watery. Then vanilla and boom! corn, BIG corn. Caramel and toffee lifts from the sides of the tongue. The sherry follows overwhelmingly strong In an off way along with nuts. And like a freight train an overwhelming slap in the mouth of something that I can't put my finger on, Maybe rancid? Maybe suffer? I always hear that sulfer kind of tastes like rotten eggs, but no eggs here. A friend of mine said it's oak. I've never tasted oak that way before. I still don't know if that's what it is, but it's just too weird for my palate. That flavor stays strong and some dark chocolate arises.

Finish: The weird flavor remains. The dark chocolate turns to milk chocolate. Medium length.

I much rather drink their ten year, single malt expression. IMHO, it seems that this triple distilled sixteen is trying to be something that is not. There is a clash of the irish style smoothness and the richness of the triple maturing. I actually give this bottle away when it was half empty, which it's a first for me. Maybe I'm comparing it too much to single malt scotch.

Every dram of Bushmills 16 year I've tried has had a really weird development and finish, bordering on bitter, sour, green wood. Its as if the staves used to make the barrels have not been appropriately "cured" (though this clearly isn't the case since its aged in bourbon, sherry, and port casks). Its like someone cut down a fairly young tree and immediately turned it into a barrel.

I have not had good experiences with Bushmills 16 yo either. The Bushmills 21 yo, on the other hand, is a work of art.


Bushmills 16 year old Single Malt Irish Whiskey is a bit light for my usual taste but still it managed to leave a nice impression. Thick stuff but light in the taste. Bushmills 16 yrs is distilled 3 times and aged in 3 different kinds of wood casks. First in American bourbon casks, then Oloroso sherry casks and finished in port wine pipes.

Even though light, I'd still call it complex. Nice Irish whiskey and definitely worth a taste. Especially the nose is good. This dram is dark and it has humor in it, again, the nose is very eccentric. That's why Bushmills 16YO is like "Intermission", a good Irish movie with dark humor.

Nose: Vanilla with sherry, sweet red berries and caramel. Hints of honey.

Taste: Nicely oily, tropical fruits and warming spices. Vanilla and sherry.

Finish: Thick with red berries and syrup.

Balance: Good dram with dark complexity in a smooth way.


Well folks, it's March 16th and tomorrow is that hallowed St. Paddy's Day. I last reviewed a Tullamore Dew 12, and so keeping with the theme, here is a Bushmills I've had around here for almost a year. If all goes well, my girlfriend and I will realize our plans for a year from now and take a trip to Ireland; visiting Bushmills is on the agenda.

Because, you see - Bushmills is the only Irish distillery that permits visitors. If you believe the marketing, distilling on the site goes back over 400 years (thought the current facilities were built in Victorian times). Another unique feature of the distillery is it is one of the very few to create both single malts and blends under the same brand (though the grain whiskey for the blends is made to order at Midleton). The 16 Year Old is not just the 10 Year Old matured for longer - it is a blend of two 16 year old malts, one having been aged in bourbon casks, the other in Oloroso sherry casks; then they are married together and finished for nine months in port pipes. Hence the moniker "Three Wood".

The nose is chock full of dark rich fruits, marzipan, Christmas cake and rum raisin - behind all that, it is softly malty. Then comes some dark chocolate (but not too dark - there is some milk chocolate there too) and roasted hazelnuts. Water brings the malt forward, with more rum raisin. Rich, wonderful nose, very complex.

The palate is sweet and malty, with black liquorice, pencil lead, grape, honey, and a good dollop of oak. Extremely mouth-filling (less so with water), incredibly rich - but over time it becomes more and more sulphurous.

The finish is very warm and deep, lots of stewed fruits and more chocolate - and a little more sulphur than I would like. You can definitely feel those port pipes now. This is a rich meal of a whiskey - chewy, filling and satisfying - but as I continue to enjoy the whiskey in the glass, more astringency shows which I am not crazy about, reminiscent a bit of the Jameson 18 Year Old. That Jameson tasted too oaky for me after a while, while this Bushmills is a little bit too sulphurous. So if you don't mind a little sulphur, you'll love it - but a bit too much for me.

Didn't know that Bushmills 16 was made of two differently aged 16 year malts. Very interesting. Good review by the way.


This is my 4th Bushmills expression.I kinda liked their younger whiskeys and was interested to try older brother. Yes, it is Bushmills) very typical taste profile.

Nose is interesting with notes of sherry, vanilla, fresh cut grass, green apple, hazelnut. On the palate there are sherry, oak, spices, apple, vanilla, jam made of rose pellets. Finish is medium long, I get some bourbon, plum jam, cocoa and cream.

There is one more note running across Nose-taste-finish which I'm having hard times to identify. Something like a sour wet oak(?). As I never noticed something like that in other Bushmills expressions I guess it's ex-port cask that caused it. This I didn't like, so took some points off for it.

Nice review Max. Maybe it is this 'sour wet oak' that I like on this dram. There is definitely something special, especially on the finish, which I like a lot. I also guess it's the port cask.


I have this bottle since 3 years. It's almost time to write a review. It's a very good whiskey, round, sweet. That starts with a nose of peach, sherry and some wood. The taste is very sweet and subtle, maybe too much. A bit of fruits: Orange mostly. And a hint of spices. The finish is softer and won't last long but full of subtle note of fruits.

A must drink. Easy.


A deep, honey-amber dram fills the glass. The legs cling to the walls and are in no hurry to descend.

The nose is fruity, apple, lemon and peach all present. Also there is some honey and caramell.

This fruit dominance continues in the taste, apple and orange mainly. Some faint spices, chili and vanilla, meekly ask for a place and are graciously welcomed to the mix. Add to that a bit of wood and pastry and you have it.

The silky finish lingers, filling the mouth with a thin veneer of apple and pear, but mainly orange, that stays with you several minutes.

This is a cozy whisky, kind of like having your own fireplace in a glass. Mild, but characteristic and pleasing.


Well, having only yesterday reviewed the Black Bush - and given it 100% - and saying that I probably would not try another Bushmills because the Black Bush is so outstanding....

After work today, I found myself at a downtown liquor store, wanting to kill a bit of time before dinner and checking out the Scotch Single Malt and Irish Whiskey. I was planning to leave with another bottle of Black Bush, but my eyes were drawn to a ticket on the shelf: "Manager's Special Bushmills 16 Year Old $15.00 off!" Of course, I simply had to have it!

After dinner, at a wonderful French Bistro tonight, I tried a Bushmills Old for the first time. I enjoyed it, just a bit rough compared to the Black Bush. Now that I am home, I cracked open the 16year old. There is no doubt that this is an exceptional whiskey. Matter of fact, I have to admit that I am enjoying the Irish Bushmills more than any Scotch Single Malt, and I have quite a few. My first impression of the 16 year old, nosing it, was of dry sherry. I found the first taste a tiny bit harsh, which I did not expect. I also find more of an alcohol burn than I would expect, especially after the Black Bush. Also a bit of the Bourbon, which may account for that? Makes for a very complex and interesting dram. I didn't think I would like it, but the port finish is very distinctive and quite nice, being a fan of port wines myself. The very first port wine I ever tasted was on a British Airways flight from Vancouver to London, and after dinner was served with an absolutely magnificent Stilton Cheese. I digress. But I had to throw that in, as a tribute to British Airways. It was also my first taste of English Stilton, and I am sitting here thinking how wonderfully well this fine 16 year old would go with a slice of Stilton. I think that the rest of this bottle will be saved for just such an occasion.

This is a most magnificent whiskey, and I am really becoming quite fond of it the more I sip it. My feeling is, however, that I will never find a better one that the Black Bush. Having tried the 16 year old, and the Old, however, I must at some point try the 10 year. I seem to find with the Irish Whiskies, that I prefer the younger ones to the older, as I do with Single Malt Scotches. At least now, with the 16 year old, I have tried a real Singl Malt Irish Whiskey! An intriquing and delicious dram,Thank you Bushmills! Pardon my Nose, Body and Palate wordings, not real good at the descriptions. Cheers, Carl


Nose, Taste, Finish and Balance are graded out of 2.5 each:

Nose: Graduating up from the Bushmills 10 year old, there is still plenty of the same joyous fruit-fair on show in the 16 year old, with pineapple, apple, banana and lemon all apparent in warm technicolor. There are however also a few extra layers of influence, no doubt from the extra maturation in the Bourbon, Sherry and finally Port casks that goes into this 16 year old. From the bourbon corner we have a subtle offering of corn-chips and cornbread, while from the sherry corner there is the smallest hint of sulphur, as well some cooling sour cream. Finally from the port we have a muted parading of date, fig and peanuts. These aren't abundant and joyful offerings however, more like an anonymous donation at the wedding of someone you don't know. Variety there is however, and the layers blend in seamlessly to form a rewardingly complex nose. 2.0

Taste: Very light and mild on the palate, once again rather anonymous for the intricate maturation process that has gone into it. It's like sitting next to someone at dinner who has two master diplomas and a doctorate and yet with very little to say for themselves by way of stimulating conversation. There is however some mild gingerbread, pine nuts and oaky elderflower to work with, as well as some orange peel and caramelised onion just to tantalise the tastebuds enough to keep the conversation going. 1.5

Finish: Rather short and vegetal, however there is a more pronounced flavour structure on show, much more in the style of what was offered to us initially on the nose. Some mild liquorice is once again reminiscent of the bourbons that once filled the barrel that this whisky briefly resided in, yet there are also some rogue flavours that cannot be immediately attributed to any of the phases of maturation, and must therefore be respected as inherent taste characteristics of the malt itself. Intriguing flavours such as mild cheddar, ginger spice and white chocolate allow the conversation to end on a welcome high. 2.0

Balance: A perfectly pleasant and soothing whisky for after dinner, however it remains slightly muted company and will have you looking over its shoulder to see who else is in the room. Perhaps who we should really be looking out for is the Bushmills 10 year old (connosr.com/reviews/bushmills/…), a whisky with far more life and abundant flavour, very much unique to itself and with a greater strength in character. I feel it may be a case of over-education and a dulling of the spirit, whereas perhaps an increase in ABV from its tame 40% might allow the raw character of the 10 year old to still shine through in the more mature 16 year old, and make the best out its diversely acquired life-experience. 2.0

@ojk I tried this and the 10 year old at a recent tasting and, I have to agree, the younger whiskey is much more interesting - especially if you take into account price. I'm not a huge fan of port finishes and this one is no exception.

@Piero: very much agreed. it's a real shame as the 10 year old is a total gem. "if it ain't broke..."


Bushmills produces some of the best Irish whiskeys in my humble opinion. I love the Original and Black Bush and adore the 10 Year Old single malt, so I was expecting quite a bit from this 16 Year Old Three Wood.

This single malt is matured in three types of wood, being American boubon barrels, Oloroso sherry casks and finally finished in old Port wine Pipes.

This explains the dark complexity of this wonderful dram.

The nose is mostly nuts, honey, some banana and vanilla fugde. Even a slight whiff of chocolate. A great nose.

On the palate, the sherry and port take center stage, but there is some coconut, raisins or other rich fruit and a little spiciness in the background. Well balanced!

The finish is medium, with again loads of rich fruit and the port comes back in full force.

I wouldn't rate this one 10 stars, but it's a very nice dram indeed.

Yeah, 10 stars is a lot! I'm yet to meet a malt I'm happy to give 10 stars to. This does seem like a good dram, so I've added it to my wishlist.

I've heard the 21 year old is even better, by far. So I'm looking into acquiring that one. I've recently ordered the 12 Year Old Bushmills, should have that soon.


Having not tried the 21 year old, but having this the 10, the original and the black, Jamesons and Jamesons 12, Powers, Tullamore Dew and Middletons, the only thing that is close in pleasure is the Middletons, and it is not enough better to justify the premium pricing. When I think Good Irish, this is the picture in my mind.

Wow, 10 stars?! Really? I have this on my shelf, but have not yet opened it. I will do so tonight!

I'm curious to try this one as well! The 21 Year is just wonderful (I recommend it).

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