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Connemara Cask Strength

Average score from 3 reviews and 16 ratings 91

Connemara Cask Strength

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Connemara Cask Strength

So tonight, my impatience gets the best of me and the Connemara Cask Strength I was hanging into finds it way into my glass.

First impressions: - Very light in color - Could smell it from across the room - Crap surrounding the cork was stickier than usual and a battle to remove :)

NOSE: Right off the get go, I'm thinking a nice, strong, but pleasant smelling White Wine. After that - something orange. My nose isn't attuned enough to tell if it's peels or the fruit itself. It's orange though. After a moment or two, I drop my nose back into range and I get reminded of cough drops. All the while, you have the Peat in there, bringing it together but it really wasn't as strong as I thought it might be. The grapes took centre stage here.

PALATE: More Grapes though not as strong as on the nose. This one was a tongue burner with a stiff alcohol burn. Let it sit for a bit and ride it out and it goes away. At this point, it tasted to me like Toothpaste, a minty kind. Kind of sweet. Not overpowering but balanced there with the grapes and the Peat. Again, the Peat taste wasn't as strong as I was expecting.

FINISH: There was something resembling Black Licorice here. It fades out pretty fast leaving a woody, peaty aftertaste. The end was somewhat bitter before fading out.

OVERALL: I loved this one. Incredibly smooth and drinkable for something as strong as it is. Good mix of flavors. They all work well together. Was surprised as it tasted more fruity than peaty to me but both elements were present.


This is the Cask Strength Version of the Cooley distillery's Connemara peated malt, the only Irish peated single malt whiskey. There is no age statement on the bottle.

Nose: robust peat, gentle malt, a little brine, a little sweet fruitiness, and carnations

Taste: delicious mellow peat, with very strong delicious barley flavours, significant brine, and a lovely underlying fruitiness and black pepper. This is an outstanding palatal delivery

Finish: the flavours, especially the peat, remain very long and delicious, fading out slowly

Balance: this is a magnificent whiskey! The flavours are intense and wonderful, and harmonise together very well. Bottling at cask strength has allowed all of the magnificent flavour to be retained. This is easily one of my favourite malts

I'm so glad you like this one, @Victor! As you know, it's one of my favourites, too.


Connemara is one of two Cooley-owned brands of single malt Irish whiskeys (the other being The Tyrconnell). Unlike The Tyrconnell—or most other Irish whiskeys, for that matter—Connemara is peated. This, however, is but the least of the features marking Connemara Cask Strength Peated Single Malt as a special dram.

The nose is utterly unique. Up front is a symphonic mélange of sweet coconut and fresh banana, taking the shape of a delectable, sticky glaze poured over hot cinnamon rolls. Only beneath all of this will you find just a hint of light, clean peat.

The palate is perfectly suggested by the nose, again with fresh banana and coconut, forming a sort of candy shell over pastry. There is also crème brulée and saltwater taffy. The peat gently, but more noticeably, circles about. There is the distinct flavour—and sensation—of a marshmallow opening on the finish, growing steadily over the exhale. It is a beautifully complex dram, and the sweet, banana-coconut-marshmallow-and-peat finish seems to linger for hours.

The body is slightly oily and light, yet rich and creamy. The legs descend thick and slow down the sides of the glass.

This is one of the first whiskies that I have ever truly loved. Having tasted it the night I brought it home, I went straight back to the store the following morning to purchase a second bottle. That first bottle is now but a distant memory, and I am well into the second one. This whiskey does not ask for your attention, but rather steals it. I, for one, am captivated.

Nice, nice, nice review.

I always thought the cask strength was unavailable -- or at least rare -- in the US, but I just saw it for the first time in Rockford, IL at the steal-of-a-price $48. That's just a few bucks more than the price the regular Connemara has risen to. I'm very tempted to stock up.

Anyway, I took my first taste last night and found it dense and very promising. I'll keep these nice notes in mind as I dig into the rest of the bottle.

Thanks for the compliments, @OldJas! I hope you enjoy the whiskey as much as you did the review. ;)

I featured the Connemara Turf Mór at a recent tasting. It's basically a highly peated version of the Cask Strength—every bit as spectacular, but with some additional dimensions that have to be tasted to be believed. I'm very, very impressed with Connemara.

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