Soon to be released: an exciting new limited edition Midleton whiskey. Midleton Very Rare Dair Ghaelach Knockrath Forest is aged in virgin casks made from oak grown in the Knockrath Forest, County Wicklow
Dair Ghaelach, which translates as ‘Irish oak’, is a series of limited release Midleton whiskies that have been matured in Irish oak casks. For this, the third release in the collection, the Midleton team selected the the Knockrath estate in the Vale of Clara where the oak has grown for more than 150 years amidst the landscape of mountains and lakes. Known for its cool summers and heavy rainfall, the climate of County Wicklow impacts the density and porosity of the oak. This, in addition to a lighter toasting of the wood and unique combination of distillates, results in subtle flavour differences between Dair Ghaelach Knockrath Forest and its predecessors, Dair Ghaelach Grinsell’s Wood and Dair Ghaelach Bluebell Forest.
The virgin oak casks were filled with Irish pot still whiskeys ranging in age from 13-26 years before maturing for a further two years in the virgin oak.
Dair Ghaelach Knockrath Forest whiskey comes in seven different bottlings with each tracing back to a specific tree from which the oak cask was made. It is bottled at cask strength, ranging from 56.1% – 56.6% ABV, with the final abv affected by the subtle differences from each tree. As Midleton distilleries Master of Maturation Kevin O’Gorman explains: “Traceability and sustainability are at the heart of this whiskey and, until we started this project, Irish oak had not been used to mature whiskey for well over 100 years. Today, thanks to sustainable practices, we can harvest small volumes and trace each bottle right back to the very oak tree that helped to create it. This has, in turn, fostered an awareness and appreciation among whiskey lovers that there is even a subtle difference between trees which contributes to a whiskey’s unique flavour.”
Midleton Very Rare Dair Ghaelach Knockrath Forest Tasting Notes
Nose: Pot still spices are accentuated by the Irish oak contribution, adding waves of toasted wood with hints of vanilla and roasted coffee, layered over fresh fruit which evolves from orchard fruits to tropical notes.
Taste: Classic pot still spices give a luscious texture to the fore, while the influence of the Irish oak adds a medley of sweet notes including chocolate and honeycomb.
Finish: Remarkably long finish with fruit and spices fading to allow the Irish oak to have the final say.
These whiskeys are available from next week with pre-orders open on our website now.