What Jameson say:
A triumph of the collaboration between the Jameson Masters, our hand crafted Jameson Rarest Vintage Reserve is a true masterpiece. The advanced aged whiskeys in this magnificent reserve are brought together with pot still whiskey that has been matured in hand-picked second fill bourbon casks to create a mellow sweetness in specially commissioned port pipes.
The result? Gloriously rich fruit character with an unmistakable barley finish. But don’t take our word for it: this rare blend was voted the world’s best Irish Blended Whiskey at the 2009 World Whiskies Awards bottled at 46%ABV and available from The Jameson Online Shop at a cost of €400.
What I say
Being a reformed Irish Whiskey snob, I am very interested to try this, although the actual age is unknown, it is stated that there is some seriously aged whiskey in there, that coupled with the fact it’s spent time in port pipes makes this particularly interesting to me.
Sour yogurt, fresh yeast and then autumnal fruits in abundance. With red currants and black berries picked fresh from the woods and tart cranberries with rich soft plums wrapped up in a hint of musty velvet.
Plenty of black peppercorns bring about a change of pace and bring forth some serious nose prickle. There is a slight nudge of passion fruit and mangos with highly polished furniture coupled with burnt sugar and a hint of ash and damp leaves.
Bitter and drying, with burnt oak, toasted coconuts and freshly ground coffee beans. Warm beeswax and burnt toast, evolving to the sweetness of pancakes and maple syrup.
Just when you think you have this dram figured out in comes a meaty depth with a smoky, salty hint of good pancetta and robust yet delicate thyme.
The vanilla finish is long, creamy and rich bringing in pears in red wine, Christmas spices and a rich plum and date jam.
Underpinning all of this is the bitterness of roasted coffee and old oak, almost too old and woody, but the balance of sweet vanilla, spices and dark fruits give this just enough sweetness to this perfectly balanced whiskey. This is seriously good whiskey, and is incredibly moreish. The finish is so long and sweet you can almost chew it, before the spices and the oak take over drying the palate, imploring you to take another sip, and well, it would be rude not too.
Kirsty Clarke (@KirstyClarke29)