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  • Writer's pictureDanny Joyce | Editor

W.D O'Connell Whiskey Merchants unveil Small Batch 5-Year-Old Single Malt Irish Whiskey

W.D O’Connell Whiskey Merchants have announced the release of it's latest innovation – the Small Batch 5-Year-Old Single Malt Irish Whiskey. This new addition to their lineup draws inspiration from the rich tradition of fortified wines from the Jerez region of Spain. Marking a significant milestone for the brand, the Fino cask is the first of it's kind and the second release in their Small Batch Sherry Series.

Founder Daithí O'Connell commented on the launch, stating, “The production of sherry wines boasts a long and storied history, characterised by its complexity and significant influence on the flavours we love in whiskey today. By using solera butts from Fernando De Castilla Bodegas in the Jerez region, we have crafted a whiskey that reimagines the possibilities of modern Irish whiskey. This release marries three malt distillates from one distillery with Fino butts from a single bodega.”

The W.D O’Connell Whiskey Merchants Small Batch Fino 5-Year-Old Irish Whiskey is a limited edition, with small quantities released every 2-3 years. O'Connell added, “This expression allowed us to experiment with multiple malt distillates from a single distillery, creating a vibrant and bold whiskey infused with tons of character. All three styles of malt were aged simultaneously in Fino Butts from Fernando De Castilla and were then partially emptied and vatted together to create 1,000 bottles.”

Non-chill filtered and bottled at 50% ABV, the W.D O’Connell Whiskey Merchants Small Batch Fino 5-Year-Old Single Malt Irish Whiskey is a bold and vibrant Irish whiskey. It will be available through W.D O’Connell Whiskey Merchants online and at key outlets in Ireland, Northern Europe, and the US starting in late May/early June 2024, with a recommended retail price of €69.95.

In this very unique limited edition batch W.D O’Connell are using 3 styles of single malt whiskey from one single distillery. The theree styles are double distilled, triple distilled and heavily peated triple distilled. Each style has been individually matured in ex solera butts from a single bodega Fernando de Castilla. W.D O’Connell then took varying amounts from each of the three styles to create an exceptional vatting of Fino matured single malt Irish whiskey.

Tasting Notes

Nose: Initial notes of toasted almonds and walnuts, characteristic of fino casks. Delicate floral aromas intertwine with hints of dried fruits, such as figs and apricots. Subtle hints of vanilla and caramel, offering a sweet counterpoint to the nutty essence.

Palate: A velvety-smooth texture envelops the palate, with a gentle warmth that builds gradually. Layers of nutty flavors dominate, with almonds and hazelnuts taking center stage, complemented by a nuanced oakiness. Bright citrus notes emerge mid-palate, reminiscent of lemon zest and orange peel, adding a refreshing zestiness. The fino cask influence lends a distinct saline quality, evoking seaside breezes and a subtle brininess. A touch of spice emerges towards the finish, with hints of white pepper and cinnamon, adding depth and complexity.

Finish: Lingering notes of toasted nuts and dried fruits persist, accompanied by a subtle sweetness. The finish is long and satisfying, with a gentle warmth that fades slowly, leaving a lasting impression of sophistication and refinement. Overall this single malt whiskey matured in fino casks offers a harmonious balance of nutty richness, floral complexity, and delicate fruitiness, culminating in a truly distinctive tasting experience.

Founder, Daithí O’Connell is striving to bring more variety to the Irish whiskey market by acquiring a diverse collection of spirit and cask combinations.

For more information please visit

Slán go fóill.


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