This week, Clonakilty Distillery’s Single Batch Double Oak was announced as the ‘World’s Best Blended Irish Whiskey’ at the World Whiskies Awards 2020, at an online announcement ceremony.
This fantastic accolade was awarded to the Double Oak, which is Clonakilty’s flagship expression in their current range. The Double Oak beat out competition from the likes of Jameson, Tullamore D.E.W., Writers’ Tears as well as Danville’s who were the 2019 incumbent in the category.
The Clonakilty Distillery’s Single Batch Double Oak is a blend of sourced malt & grain whiskeys that were initially matured in ex-bourbon barrels before being vatted and a non-disclosed percentage of the blend is finished in virgin American oak casks, with the remainder of the blend being finished in NEOC (New Era of Cask) casks, which are hand shaved and toasted red wine casks from the Bordeaux region of France. All the components of this blend are matured in Clonakilty Distillery’s Atlantic warehouses.
The Single Batch Double Oak is the first Irish whiskey to be finished in these new NEOC casks, which are said to offer low bitterness and astringency, compared to other European oak species with little to no residual sulphites from the wine that was the previous occupant of these casks. This NEOC & Virgin Oak finished whiskey is already proving to be a hit with connoisseurs, and from my personal experience sampling this whiskey, I must say I am a fan too.
Late in 2019, this Double Oak expression also picked up Double Gold at the prestigious San Francisco Spirits Competition, which coupled with the accolade of ‘World’s Best Blended Irish Whiskey’ is likely to see these expressions fly off the shelves in 2020.
The whiskey itself is triple distilled, non-chill filtered and bottled at 43.6% ABV.
Official Clonakilty Distillery Tasting Notes:
Soft spices, vanilla, fresh cut grass, slightly perfumed, ripe apple/pear notes. Fresh leather tones.
Warm spices – cubeb pepper and ginger. Fresh cut grass, hazelnut and almond notes.
Long finish with vanilla sweetness and spices lingering on the palate.
*Potstilled Tasting notes to follow.