While Teeling has made a good name for itself in just a few years, the reputation is mostly built on ‘acquired’ whiskey, the barrels gathered while the Teeling family was running the Cooley distillery. The spirit that makes up the famous 24 Year Old or the 1991 bottlings is rumoured to be made at Bushmills for instance.
This is strictly unrelated to what is currently being made at the Teeling distillery in Dublin, like this Teeling Pot Still Whiskey, one of the core range expressions. It’s made from 50% malted and 50% unmalted barley, a traditional Dublin mash bill.
We’re trying the latest Batch 3, which is supposedly around 3 years of age and a mix of virgin oak, sherry and ex-bourbon casks.
Teeling Pot Still Whiskey (46%, OB 2019, 6000 btl.)
Nose: light orchard fruits with the classic pot still spices. Green apples and apricots, as well as some lemon peel. Then hints of vanilla, pepper and grassy notes. Light herbal touches (parsley) and broken branches. Fine but rather inoffensive.
Mouth: nice texture, with a soft and slightly sweet onset (peach, candy floss, apple juice). A little caramel. Some greener notes after a while (grasses, nuts). A bit of sweet mint as well. Subtle sherry notes towards the end, like milk chocolate and toffee.
Finish: not too long. More of these chocolate notes, mixed with oak spice and grassy touches.
It’s a bit of a strange situation for a distillery to release bottlings that are essentially ‘work in progress’ while bringing out impressive old bottlings at the same time (a profile which it may never be able to replicate). As a base expression this Pot Still Batch 3 is okay, just not very exciting, let’s hope there are better options once they run out of acquired whiskey. Available from The Whisky Exchange or Master of Malt among others.