This whiskey was sent to me from the brilliant Teeling whiskey company. All opinions & tasting notes are my own.
I’m continuing my journey through the Teeling whiskey range. The Brabazon bottling series was released in 2017, and takes the name from the Brabazon family, who dominated the Liberties area in Dublin from the 16th to the 19th century, and became Earls of Meath.
The Brabazons laid out the market space at Newmarket, now home to the Teeling distillery. The area became an important area for business which attracted many tradesmen and crafts – among them Walter Teeling who started the original Teeling distillery in 1782. The Liberties housed several distilleries at the time, and because of this history, it’s a delight to see the distilling tradition return to the area in our days.
The Brabazon series celebrates the reason why Teeling and many other distillers came to this part of Dublin, to begin with, and why they are coming back.
The Brabazon bottling number 1 is a vatting of single malt whiskeys from six different sherry casks and bottled at 49,5% ABV. It’s non-chill-filtered and has no added colourings.
I opened this little bottle while spending a day in our new house, with no furniture other than my computer desk, no kitchen gear and no heating yet (let’s call it we have a DIY house). After several hours without heating and quite dull weather outside, I was frozen, and it was nice with a little dram. But it’s also a fact that whiskey needs a certain temperature to show its true identity, and I’m not sure how well I managed to warm it with my hand.
Not the very typical sherry aromas to me. Darker damp wood, mint chocolate, baked apple and cinnamon. A light medicinal feel. A quite odd mixture of aromas!
Dark wood, with a very spicy or peppery attack as a first impression. There’s some undefined sweetness. The baked apple with cinnamon comes back, and the spicy notes follow along to a quite long and dry finish.
With a few drops of water there’s more vanilla and pepper on the nose, it becomes sweeter to the palate but loses some body and the more interesting characters.
This whiskey was generally quite odd to me – I find it a bit too indecisive and less balanced than their standard single malt for example. However, the extra spice suited my palate very well, especially on the day of tasting, and the fact that this whiskey also gave me a history lesson makes me like it more!