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I drove to Peterborough last weekend to obtain this hard-to-find-in-Ontario Irish single malt. Was it worth it? Yeah, sure - but good thing it was a nice drive.
Cooley's resurrected the Tyrconnell brand after the distillery had shut down many years prior. I was eager to try the port finish after hearing it was one of the better Irish single malts.
It is a deep coppery colour, with a lot going on on the nose: obviously port, but also caramel, malt, raisin, Christmas cake, almond paste, citrus and tropical fruits. Very rich. Water brings out cereal and toast.
On the palate: again, strong port flavour, and alcohol on the tip of the tongue is a little hot. Black licorice, plum, dark maple syrup, somewhat oaky with a vanilla coating. Water doesn't seem to alter the flavour profile very much, actually.
Medium length finish that doesn't leave much lingering. Well balanced - the smoothness is accentuated by the strong port finish. It has a lot of depth but could have more variety on the palate. A little on the sweet, winey side for me but I appreciate its silkiness and ease of drinking. I like it but don't love it - though I keep trying them, I continue to have a slight aversion to wine/port/sherry finishes that are too strong. But I can see why this one is enjoyed as it does have a lot to offer. In fact, my biggest annoyances are the two typos on the can the bottle comes in - that's pretty inexcusable.