Like the original Tullamore D.E.W., Tullamore D.E.W. 12yo Special Reserve is a triple distilled blend of all three types of Irish whiskey (pot still, malt and grain). However, it has a high proportion of the first two, matured in a combination of bourbon and Oloroso sherry casks, for 12 to 15 years. A very fine aged whiskey with great complexity.
The Tullamore Dew brand was bought by William Grant’s in 2012. The 12yo Special Reserve (originally a travel retail exclusive) was re-introduced recently with an updated presentation.
While they still rely on Midleton at the moment, they are also building a new distillery in Tullamore to take over production in the long run.
Tullamore D.E.W. 12 yo ‘Special Reserve’ (40%, OB +/- 2015)
Nose: starts a bit underpowered. There’s a creamy fruitiness of lime, pear, mango and yellow berries, but in a soft way. Some honey and floral notes. Raisins. Grassy notes. Also a few dusty, grainy notes.
Mouth: sweet and oily but again fairly light. Sweet apple, lemon syrup and toffee. Barley sugar and vanilla. Pineapple on syrup. Cinnamon.
Finish: not too long, grainier but not rough. Some nutty notes in the very end, with a spicy warmth.
The pot still tropical fruits are quite shy here, and I think the malty sweetness is a bit overpowering. If I wanted this profile, I would pick a Scotch whisky. That said, it’s a tasty formula. Between € 45 (okay) and € 70 (definitely too much).