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Redbreast 12 Year Old

Hence I beat my breast in disappointment

0 1179

@cricklewoodReview by @cricklewood

14th Oct 2017

0

  • Nose
    20
  • Taste
    22
  • Finish
    17
  • Balance
    20
  • Overall
    79

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Redbreast was a no-brainer when choosing a bottle to represent Irish whisky for our March whisky club meeting. There are few representative of the Single pot-still (formerly pure pot still) style of Irish whisky, it consistently receives praise across most of its expressions. With it’s proportion of Sherry matured whisky I thought it would be a style that would be familiar to our members, a good starting point.

I didn’t count on the 12 year old being austere to the point that it would go unnoticed, it didn’t help that it was preceded by the stunning Teeling single malt. I had another dram from this bottle recently that confirmed my feelings

Nose: Freshly poured concrete, sherried oak, soaked fruitcake, plasticine, a hint of pears. Marzipan, tobacco, buttered toast, wet cardboard, it’s not very fruity.

Palate: Despite it being 40% it’s got a nip, almost like a cognac, soaked raisins, honey nut cheerios, ginger, a carpenters shop floor, wood shavings, mineral oil. It then turns dry, a smidgen herbal, dried lemon zest, a bit of toffee with nutmeg and cloves.

Finish: astringent, green peppercorns and oak shavings a bit of the plum pudding and almonds but it’s gone so quickly and that’s perhaps where the low ABV hurts it.

There are elements of this whisky I love, the interplay of the robust grain and plasticine notes with that of the sherried oak. Airing out the bottle helped bring some definition to the palate but ultimately I’m still unsure how I feel about this whisky. It’s certainly well crafted and while I’m curious about the cask strength version, I’m not certain the higher proof would fix my qualms with it. Perhaps that short finish?

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11 comments

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

Interesting. Great review of course but interesting in that someone recently wrote highly of the same expression and I was wondering if the 12 and 12 CS had thew same 1-2 punch as the Benromach 10 and 10/100. Now I will definitely try before I buy

2 years ago 0

@OdysseusUnbound
OdysseusUnbound commented

I really like the 12 CS (review coming soon) and I also remember liking the standard 12. But I haven’t had this one in a long time. The Cask Strength version is very rich. My bottle is very toffee-heavy. (Spoiler alert) I love it.

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC commented

Good review, thanks! I had a bottle earlier this year. Granted, it was my second pot still whisky, but I thought it was pretty good. Mid 80's ish.

I seem to remember thinking what it could be at CS as it had a good mouth feel for 40% but I'm sure some more 'pep' wouldn't hurt. Reviews on the CS seem to be generally pretty good?!

Definitely improved with time.

2 years ago 0

@RianC
RianC commented

@Nozinan Had the pleasure of enjoying the Benromach 10 and 100 proof last summer. I'm a Benromach fan, it must be said, but how lovely are those two?! In some ways the standard 10 edges it in others, the 100 proof takes the cake; but what a way to get to know a whisky by having them side by side like that, eh?

2 years ago 0

Astroke commented

Hmm, never tried the regular 12, jumped right to the cask strength which is a favorite in any category for me. Lustau was ok as well.

2 years ago 0

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

@RianC I've never tried the Bens side to side but I will probably pour off a little of the 10 for just that comparison when I open a 100/10 in the future. I do recall more sherry and less peat in the 57% version.

2 years ago 0

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

@Astroke For some, cask strength is "entry level". I can live with that... the 12 CS was my first Redbreast, and my first age stated Irish bottle.

2 years ago 0

@Frost
Frost commented

Interesting review - good notes!

I've tried this Redbreast twice, from two different bottles, and had two different experiences. The first enjoyable the second tasteless and watery. I'll try a third time, I'm not giving up that easily.

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

It's not about giving up. It's about the fact that we have a finite number of dams to drink so we ought to make everyone as good as possible.

2 years ago 2Who liked this?

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

@cricklewood My experience with the 12 has nothing to do with your experience. It was not austere at all but a great mix of dried fruits and sherry spices, something like a Glenfarclas 15 going Irish. I would add that the Redbreast has offered a better quality over time.

On the other hand, I remember that, during a tasting that I organized for my family, I had the 12 followed by the 12 CS and the CS was all closed and only hot with alcohol. That was a surprise because it was not a new bottle. I came to realize the bottle had rest unattended for many months and I find that sometimes those unattended bottles react like new bottles, chamging a lot over the first two or three drams. That is why I would suggest that you sample your bottle again. I would certainly be glad to hear how it evolves.

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

@cricklewood
cricklewood commented

@Nozinan, I always wonder with these releases (Ben 10, Laphroaig 10, Redbreast) if it's the same cask selection for both the regular and CS whiskys. @Robert99 I am not ready to give up on redbreast yet, there's aspects of the flavour profile I really like. I'll try our club bottle again in a bit, if not I might try a pour at a bar. Or perhaps I need to try the CS after all.

2 years ago 0

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