The Irish whiskey tradition is every bit as proud – and sometimes convoluted – as their Scottish neighbors to the east. Distilled at the New Midleton Distillery for Irish Distillers, an arm of Pernod Recard, and distributed by Mitchell & Son of Dublin, keeping track of the Green Spot from barley to bottle can be an adventure in and of itself. Regardless, Green Spot is a bonded whisky and one of the few remaining pot still whiskies left in Ireland, deriving its name from the practice of marking casks of different ages with a spot of colored paint to tell them apart. At one time a 10 year old whiskey, the current iteration is made up of whiskies aged 7-10 years. The whiskey has been steadily popular over the past century and more. An older sibling, the Yellow Spot, is aged in Malaga wine casks.
Type: Single pot still
Maturation: New bourbon, refill bourbon (75%) and sherry casks (25%)
Nose: Vanilla, oak, sherry, citrus
Palate: Apple, spice
Finish: Spice, honey
Comments: Water is not recommended due to the already low abv.
Adam – I was not a fan of this whiskey the first time I tried it, or the second. It was the low point in a tasting I gave over St. Patrick’s Day in Seattle. Strangely, those attending really enjoyed it. After letting it sit for a year, I’m starting to see why. It is a little more complex than I gave it credit for, initially. It’s now simple but interesting. There are actual subtleties there to be explored, if quickly hidden by the brash vanilla with a dollop of spice. Letting it sit in the glass brings out some hints of sherry and fruit. Refreshing and light, despite a little oil in the mouth, and one you’d want at the beginning of an evening rather than the end so that the delicacies don’t get lost. I still wish it were cheaper, as I can get a bottle of Highland Park 12 for the same price, and there’d be a lot more going on. It might be good for those newer to whiskey, as there aren’t many sharp teeth here.
Meghan – This Green Spot might make a nice base for cocktails. I prefer the nose to the taste. For me, the nose has a warm smell, a definite whisky smell. But the palate is quite a bit flatter. It is quite smooth but it lacks variances of taste to balance the smoothness, resulting in a flat, sweet whisky. It is certainly drinkable but should be drank with good friends and good conversation that does not focus on what is in your glass.
Caitlin – I felt like this sort of lost its groove. A lot of whiskies get more interesting tasting the more you drink. This one got duller.
Ben – It didn’t have a very strong nose. One of the things I noticed right away. Closer to how moonshine/raw spirit has very little scent.