The Cooley Distillery has always been known for their world class Irish whiskey, like Connemara, Kilbeggan, Tyrconnell, Greenore, and Michael Collins. In 2012, the distillery was sold to Beam Suntory, but the family who ran the distillery left to create a new line of Irish Whiskey under the Teeling Whiskey brand.
The initial Teeling Whiskey releases have all been strong, many of which are reminiscent of the style of whiskey produced at Cooley. They now have their Teeling Single Malt Irish Whiskey, which is significant because the Teelings produced Michael Collins Single Malt at the Cooley Distillery for Sidney Frank, and it was one of the best whiskeys they produced.
Teeling Single Malt Irish Whiskey (46% ABV, $60) – light gold in color, this non-chill filtered, non-age stated whiskey still has a nice sparkle to it. Sweet cereal grains lead a very expressive and approachable nose. Underneath the grain is honey, dark chocolate, apricot, and oak. The aromas on the nose are very well integrated, with nice balance, and complexity.
The entry for Teeling Single Malt is as expressive as the nose with cereal grains, clover honey, honeysuckle, dried apricot, salt, black pepper, and a touch of smoke. The mouth feel of this whiskey is exquisite – a touch of lushness with a sense of lightness.
Heading towards the midpalate, a core of spice begins to develop with black pepper and oak along with an intensification of the apricot and clover honey. The smoke, which was more of a suggestion in the entry, develops into a nice ribbon of flavor. The midpalate also sees the addition of some acidity with dried orange peel. The heart of this whiskey is just delicious, well crafted, well intergrated, and well balanced.
The finish for Teeling Single Malt Irish Whiskey is also very enjoyable with roasted grain, clover honey, orange peel, black pepper, and smoke. The spice in the finish is focused on the center of the tongue with the sweeter notes wrapped around it. The finish is long, and fairly dry.
Teeling Single Malt whiskey shows that Irish whiskey can be light and affable without sacrificing flavor or balance. This Teeling Single Malt stands shoulder to shoulder with some of the best work the Teelings did at the Cooley Distillery. 94 Points