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Green Spot Single Pot Still

Whisky Advent Calendar - Day 17

0 888

@talexanderReview by @talexander

17th Dec 2013

0

  • Nose
    21
  • Taste
    23
  • Finish
    21
  • Balance
    23
  • Overall
    88

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

I already reviewed this single pot still whiskey back in March, but it is re-posted here. My notes would be the same, but on a purely subjective level I think I would give this a higher score, just because I love Irish pot still even more now than I did a scant few months ago:

"About a bajillion years ago, in 1887, there were 28 distilleries in Ireland, and only one did not produce single pot still whiskey. Today it's almost the reverse - Midleton is the one Irish distiller (not there are many more) that produces single pot still. What is unique about Green Spot is that the brand is owned by the last Irish whiskey bonder, Mitchell & Son. You see, back in the day, Irish whiskey was sold by companies (whiskey bonders) that provided distillers with casks to fill, and when those casks came back they were matured in warehouses owned by those bonders. When matured, the bonders then sold those whiskies under their own brands. So while the Scots were building global brands like Johnnie Walker and Chivas Regal, Irish distillers were entrusting their spirit to local companies that had absolutely no ability to attract consumers beyond their local geographic influence. It's no wonder that by the 1960s Irish whiskey commanded a scant 1% of the global whiskey market. That has changed in recent years, as Irish whiskies such as Jameson and Bushmills have been growing internationally by leaps and bounds, thanks to excellent marketing, celebrity endorsements and a general growth in whisky consumption.

Mitchell & Son identify the casks in their warehouse by a splash of variously coloured paint - and until recently (with the newly rebranded 12 year old Yellow Spot), Green Spot (with no age statement) was the last surviving expression (and historically was always the most popular). The newest release features much more elegant package design than previous releases.

The colour is a bright light gold. The nose is fresh cut grass and anise; herbal, clean and fresh. Eucalyptus and menthol. Water brings out more of that fresh eucalyptus but with more spice.

The palate is even more herbal (oil of oregano), more anise, and some cinnamon. Almonds and pears. Spicy and nutty. Classic pot still, absolutely lovely. Water generally dilutes the palate, but gives a creamier mouthfeel.

The finish is light and brisk, medium length, with lots of lingering spice and fruitiness. As far as pot stills go, this is excellent, though I gravitate toward Redbreast 15 and John's Powers Lane (grab either immediately if you get the chance). But grab this too, as it is not easy to obtain. It's an excellent introduction to what I think is the pinnacle of Irish whiskey styles."

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8 comments

@paddockjudge
paddockjudge commented

Absolutely fantastic review! You've got me jonesin' for some green spot.

5 years ago 0

@talexander
talexander commented

It's pretty yummy! It's funny how most of my whisky pals really do not like Irish whiskey. Rick was over last night and tried a Redbreast 15 (which is AMAZING) and he was nonplussed. Hm.

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

Greenspot does it for me...Redbreast 15?...not so much...

5 years ago 0

@systemdown
systemdown commented

Tried the Green Spot for the first time the other day, must say I wasn't overly impressed. I mean it was fine, but after very positive reviews (such as yours @talexander) I found my dram didn't live up to the expectations I had placed upon it.

I'm still really keen to try Redbreast (CS in particular), and others.

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@systemdown, was your sample of Greenspot from a fresh bottle? I have the feeling that this is one that will not age well with air exposure.

5 years ago 0

@talexander
talexander commented

Or he just didn't like it. I know a lot of serious whisky connoisseurs who simply don't have a taste for Irish whiskey, simple as that.

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@talexander, very true, "Or he just didn't like it." That could well be the case. And, yes, as you say, lots of people just don't care for the Irish style, in general. My point is that there are some whiskies that really lose their sparkle when they have sat around for awhile. Greenspot, at least what I've had of it from your original big non-Christmas Calendar bottle, is one I would call a "sparkly" or 'bright' sort of whiskey, that bottle of it anyway. I can imagine an old bar sample of that one as not tasting anywhere near as good as the sample I had and loved. I was very pleasantly SURPRISED by it, because even though I find most Irish whiskeys to be agreeable enough, they almost never blow me away, and few of them do I like as much as I like the Greenspot.

5 years ago 0

@systemdown
systemdown commented

I think it's a little from column 'a' (possible over-oxidation / loss of "sparkle") and a little from column 'b' (not my style - I found it light and uncomplicated). I did note the fill level was around 1/3 or even a little under and @Victor's right - I did try it at a whisky bar.

I wasn't too worried though because they have pretty high turnover of the basics - Green Spot was the cheapest Pot Still Irish on the menu and given how well known it is in whisky circles, I figured it was a frequently purchased dram..

I guess I'll have to try again with a fresh sample or bottle to be fair. Thanks for your input guys.

5 years ago 0

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