Danny Joyce | Editor
New Whiskey from Wayward Irish Spirits - The Liberator & Lakeview Single Estate
Over the past year or so, where there has been a lot of uncertainty, there has been a lot happening in the World of Whiskey and one thing of certainty is that quality Irish Whiskey was being produced and matured as time ticked on.
One Company who have been making waves (and great Whiskey!) is Wayward Irish Spirits.. producers of the fantastic Liberator Whiskey. The Liberator has been a favourite of mine for a while now, and once featured on the Whiskey on Wednesday segment of the blog. These guys have produced some fantastic bottles in the past, they have been limited in numbers though so unfortunately some are hard to come by now, definitely try some if you get the chance!
The line up for 2021 and beyond is looking bright, these are the three new whiskeys from Wayward Irish Spirits to pick up and keep an eye out for;
The Liberator Storehouse Special Port ’n’ Peat
Wayward Irish Spirits have delightedly released Batch 2 of their latest Liberator Storehouse Special, the Port ’n’ Peat. A delicious Port finished Whiskey with a very subtle Peated Malt element.
Founder of Wayward Irish Spirits, Maurice O’Connell says “Our Storehouse Specials are small runs of interesting Whiskeys from our Bonded Storehouse – we like to keep the Whiskey community in touch with our progress and also use it to test release potential new products. After the fantastic reaction to the Port ’n’ Peat at Belfast Whiskey Week we released 200 bottles of Batch 1 which sold out very quickly, so we’re doing a further small test release before deciding whether to add it to our core range”.
Maurice explains; “We’ve been playing with the wonderful effect a small element of Peated Malt has on our Port finished Whiskey. Too much or too little risks one overpowering the other but we found that around 5% Peated Malt was the sweet spot where the Peat highlights the Port, making a very moreish and approachable Whiskey”.
“This is a premium blended Whiskey with a high (45%) Malt content. The unpeated Malt was finished in really fresh Tawny and Ruby Port Casks and half of the Grain component was finished in fresh Ruby Port casks, all for 9-12 months. The Whiskeys in this blend were sourced from Cooley and Great Northern. As with all our Whiskeys, we cut it gently cut over many weeks to avoid stressing it, borrowing from Cognac tradition. The colour is natural, it’s not chill filtered or otherwise messed with. As everything other than distillation - from maturation to finishing, blending and bottling - can be done on site, we can take the time to do things properly.
There are 400 numbered half (350ml) bottles (200 for the Irish market) available.
Bottled at 46% ABV, RSP €35.
Available now from Irish Malts, Celtic Whiskey, James Fox, Tiny Tipples and Carryout Killarney.
The Liberator Malt in Tawny Port Finish – Batch 3 Hot on the heels of it making it into the Finals of the Blas na hÉireann Food Awards (medallists to be announced 2nd October), WIS are proud to announce the latest release of The Liberator Malt in Tawny Port Finish. This is a premium rich and complex Whiskey with lots of fruit notes from the really fresh Tawny Port barrels. This is Ireland’s first vatted Malt in decades and led the wave of Tawny Port finishes, showing the innovation that Whiskey Bonders like Wayward Irish Spirits can bring to the category. Similar to Batch 2, the components are 2006 Cooley Single Malt (increased to 25% in this Batch) and 2015/2016 Great Northern Single Malt. 1,000 numbered bottles (450 for the Irish market) at 46% ABV with a RSP of €65.
Available now from Irish Malts, Celtic Whiskey, James Fox, Tiny Tipples and Carryout Killarney and in Supervalu’s throughout Kerry.
Introducing Lakeview Single Estate Whiskey Wayward Irish Spirits is getting closer to the release of the first Lakeview Single Estate Whiskey from their 2018 Hilly Field barley harvest. This was small-batch malted in Naas and then distilled (by Great Northern Distillery) into Pot Still spirit to their 50/50 mash bill and specification in March 2019. Initially in Bourbon casks for 3 months before transferring into NEOC casks (First Growth chateau Bordeaux casks, hand shaved and re-toasted). Maurice says “This is our first Whiskey from Barley grown on the Lakeview Estate and matured here. The Hilly Field, where the Whiskey was born, is adjacent to our Bonded Storehouse ‘The House of Contentment’ and I think people value that provenance and authenticity. There are many views on the effect of Terroir on the barley used to make Whiskey but there’s no doubt that the Estate’s constantly changing microclimate exerts a definite influence on maturation here. Even at 2.5 years, the Whiskey is impressing tasters with a maturity beyond its years and it’s already very drinkable.” A small release of 800 bottles is planned to mark its ‘coming of age’ in March 2022. Pre-orders are being taken now based on a price of €95 for a 700ml bottle at 46% ABV.
A small number of quarter casks (55-60L) with the same 2019 spirit are available at €5,000 +vat including 3 years further storage and bottling, representing around €50/bottle before vat and duty.
For more information on this, get in touch with the guys in Wayward Irish Spirits here and they'll happily help with any queries.
The future is certainly bright for The Liberator, stay tuned for further updates along the way. You can follow their journey on Instagram or check out waywardirish.com for more details.
Slán go fóill,