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Coleraine Whiskey

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Coleraine Whiskey

Postby Deactivated Member » Wed Sep 06, 2006 9:40 pm

Does anyone know if Bushmills still distills and blends Coleraine Whiskey ? It's been a while since I had a bottle - but I recently saw a bottle in Ireland which stated that it is "distilled and matured in Ireland " - a well known Cooley 'ploy'. A bottle bought a year ago, clearly labelled it as a Bushmills Whiskey. I wonder whether the Diageo takeover might have led Bushmills to 'drop' Coleraine - and Cooley take it on. I really hope not, the Bushmills link is valued (I actually didn't buy it because of doubts - there's too many Cooley brands out there !)
Contacts with Bushmills have not been helpful - they used to be great at responding, but Diageo seems to have 'roped them' into their corporate 'swamp' !
Last edited by Deactivated Member on Fri Sep 08, 2006 12:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Aidan » Wed Sep 06, 2006 11:20 pm

I'd say it still is Bushmills, as it's a bit too closely linked to Bushmills for Cooley to take over, but you'd never know.
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Thu Sep 07, 2006 12:45 am

Historically Bushmills own the the label and I cannot see why Bushmills still does not distill Coleraine. Have you any reason to believe other wise. It may be just a case of trying to make it seem like another brand by omiting the made by bushmills part.

A quick way to find out is to call the Shop in the distillery and ask if they have any Coleraine for sale. If they do.... they still make it.. :wink: as they would not sell an opponents product.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Thu Sep 07, 2006 9:28 am

I think Bushmills products (with the exception of the single malt) used to be a blend of product from Middleton (grain) and Bushmills (malt). Has Irish Distillers offloaded Bushmills - in which case, would they have to be making new arrangements for buying in grain whiskey for their blends?
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Postby Aidan » Thu Sep 07, 2006 9:39 am

Bushmills still has an arrangement with Irish Distillers to provide grain for thier blends, like Blackbush etc. Colraine is a similar formula to Blackbush, but with more grain and less malt.

Bushmills also supplies Irish Distillers with malt for blends like Paddy.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Sep 08, 2006 12:52 pm

You may like to know that Bushmills have now confirmed that "for the time being, Coleraine Whiskey will continue to be distilled and matured at the Old Bushmills Distillery - using Bushmill's own malt and grain whiskies from Middleton". What 'for the time being' means, I'm not sure !
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Fri Sep 08, 2006 2:02 pm

I presume that's because it is not a big seller and not a very highly regarded blend. Basically this is trying to live off the original which has not been recreated to a high standard. Basically a bog standard cheap blend unfortunately. So if you like it you should stock up maybe but I would imagine that it will not be banished to touch just yet. Of course the fact that bushmills has changed ownership they are probably reviewing everything and how to proceed etc....
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Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Sep 08, 2006 4:48 pm

irishwhiskeychaser wrote:I presume that's because it is not a big seller and not a very highly regarded blend. Basically this is trying to live off the original which has not been recreated to a high standard. Basically a bog standard cheap blend unfortunately. So if you like it you should stock up maybe but I would imagine that it will not be banished to touch just yet. Of course the fact that bushmills has changed ownership they are probably reviewing everything and how to proceed etc....


Actually, as you probably gather, I'm quite partial to a drop of Coleraine (well, certainly the blend that was being produced last year at Bushmills) !
As Jim Murray has said (in a couple of places now) it's improved immeasurably in the last few years - they seem to have been using a higher percentage of (Bushmills) malts (almost as much as 'White' Bush'). At £10.99, in most supermarkets in the 'north', its great value - certainly better value than other Irish blends (particularly Jamesons & Powers) - and if you like 'triple-distilled' without the pot still (which I do), there's nothing to compare at that price ('White' Bush' at £13.49 is the next best).
I agree, I'll get a few bottles while I can !!
Oh, by the way, Bushmills seemed to indicate that they were reviewing their whole 'grains' buying policy - with no links with ID/Pernod now, they might source their grain whiskey supplies elsewhere, other than Middleton. That will surely affect all the Bushmills blends (the - many - buyers of 'Black Bush' beware !)
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Fri Sep 08, 2006 5:00 pm

That's very interesting. I just read JM's rating and see that comment now. It'samazing how a notion from years ago can stay with you. I must give it ago again. And as you say it's cheap as chips which in it's self should not be taken as bad. I've had White Bushmills very recently and eventhough it's not bad just a bit too sweet for me.

And if they change their source for grain that could be very interesting :shock:
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Postby Aidan » Fri Sep 08, 2006 5:03 pm

nstretton wrote:Oh, by the way, Bushmills seemed to indicate that they were reviewing their whole 'grains' buying policy - with no links with ID/Pernod now, they might source their grain whiskey supplies elsewhere, other than Middleton. That will surely affect all the Bushmills blends (the - many - buyers of 'Black Bush' beware !)


Their only option is to make their own grain whiskey or buy it from Cooley - otherwise, it will no longer be Irish whiskey.
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Fri Sep 08, 2006 5:09 pm

I suppose Cooley is more of a political statement as they are a small independant company and Midleton are owned by a big conglomerate foe. I wonder if this comes to pass will Midleton open it's doors to some independant persuits :?:
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Sep 11, 2006 11:15 am

irishwhiskeychaser wrote:That's very interesting. I just read JM's rating and see that comment now. It'samazing how a notion from years ago can stay with you. I must give it ago again. And as you say it's cheap as chips which in it's self should not be taken as bad. I've had White Bushmills very recently and eventhough it's not bad just a bit too sweet for me.

And if they change their source for grain that could be very interesting :shock:


I really must endorse 'Irishwhiskeychaser's' comments re Coleraine. It HAS changed so dramatically (see Jim Murray's comments) in the last couple of years - for the better. So many people who've grown up drinking 'Irish', have the 'old' Coleraine in mind (and many I've spoken to). They try the 'new' blend - and are 'converted' !!
If more tried it, enjoyed it and started buying it, the future of the Whiskey would be ensured, Bushmills would keep it on - and one less Irish Whiskey would be lost to the world (I for one, SO regret the 'demise' of Hewitts) !
Last edited by Deactivated Member on Mon Sep 11, 2006 11:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Aidan » Mon Sep 11, 2006 11:21 am

I picked up a bottle of Hewitts a few months ago for 22 euro. They can still be found. It's a real shame that they are't producing this anymore.

It was the only Midleton blend of grain and malt, I believe. Thanfully, it's still on the shelves of pubs. Tastes pretty nice too.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Sep 11, 2006 11:30 am

Aidan wrote:I picked up a bottle of Hewitts a few months ago for 22 euro. They can still be found. It's a real shame that they are't producing this anymore.

It was the only Midleton blend of grain and malt, I believe. Thanfully, it's still on the shelves of pubs. Tastes pretty nice too.


I was in the Celtic Whiskey shop in Dawson Street last week, asking about stocks of Hewitt's - they've not seen any bottles for 6 months or more. They thought a few might still be in shops in Cork, Kerry, Limerick etc, but I don't get down there very often.
I also asked if they had any Coleraine. Amazingly, I was the third person that day who asked - "if we had more enquiries we might get some bottles in" was the reply ! So for all you who live near Dublin, ask, get a bottle, try it (with open mind !), enjoy (I think you will), pester Celtic Whiskey to get some cases in - and get a future for the brand !
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Postby Aidan » Mon Sep 11, 2006 11:33 am

I think I've seen the Colraine in Tescos a few times, although I haven't looked in a long time. I'll have to get a bottle.
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Mon Sep 11, 2006 12:01 pm

I 'll have to tell the missus that it is only available in the Distillery... an excuse to go :wink:
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Postby Aidan » Mon Sep 11, 2006 12:09 pm

Adrian - tell her it's only available in the south of France!
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Sep 11, 2006 12:19 pm

irishwhiskeychaser wrote:I 'll have to tell the missus that it is only available in the Distillery... an excuse to go :wink:


TELL her you need to go up to Antrim (or France, if she'll wear it !), but you only need a short ('ish) trip to Enniskillin really (not that far from Galway ?). The Centra Supermarket Liqourstore (on the Lower Level) in the centre of town, had a couple of dozen bottles last week - at £10.99
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Mon Sep 11, 2006 1:22 pm

Aidan wrote:Adrian - tell her it's only available in the south of France!



The Problem with that is she'll agree and want to come....
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Sep 11, 2006 3:44 pm

Lovers of Irish Blends really do need to publicise their belief in the Whiskeys much more. It annoys me how Scotch Blends get all the kudos, masses of choice and international recognition, when they are (generally) far inferior to Irish (certainly the Standard, 'unaged' Whiskies). What really upsets me about Scotch Blends, is their 'dishonesty' - nobody ever knows for sure their sources (apart from the blenders) - what 'malts' they are made up from, how many are used, where the 'grains' come from etc. At least with (all, as far as I know) Irish Blends, you know the source of the 'malts' and 'grains' (helped I know by having so few distlleries !).
It all came home to me, when, having been buying Langs Select for many years, believing it to be predominantly sourced from Glengoyne malts (which I love) - the 'home' distillery - I learn on a tour, that 25 different malts are used ("of course, I can not tell you which ones", I was informed by the Guide !) - and Glengoyne malts don't even make up 20% of the malt blend !
With Coleraine, Bushmills, Jamesons, Powers, Paddy, Tullamore - and even the (really 'Scottish' !) Cooley Blends, you know exactly where they come from.
Last edited by Deactivated Member on Mon Sep 11, 2006 3:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Aidan » Mon Sep 11, 2006 3:52 pm

There's a certain amount of fun involved in guessing what's in a blend, though.

An Irish blend is very different to a scottish one. Personally, I prefer the Irish, although there are some great Scottish blends.

Blend, vatting, single malt... I would like to think that I judge them all on their merits, rather than what's on the label.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Sep 11, 2006 4:05 pm

Aidan wrote:There's a certain amount of fun involved in guessing what's in a blend, though.

An Irish blend is very different to a scottish one. Personally, I prefer the Irish, although there are some great Scottish blends.

Blend, vatting, single malt... I would like to think that I judge them all on their merits, rather than what's on the label.


Yes, I agree it can be fun. But, it's really annoying when you fancy trying a new blend from the vast range on sale, you know what you like (eg what malts you're 'attracted' to) and you've got only a few pounds in your pocket, which you don't want to waste on buying some c**p - you've no idea what to go for. If, at least you knew that it contained x% of one malt and 0% of that malt you hate, then at least you could make an informed judgement - even if no one will be honest enough to tell you that it's only 25% malt, or whatever !!
Generally, everyone knows that a certain 'Irish' blend contains 75% Bushmills malt and another; a 'smidgin' of pure pot still, 20% Midleton malt and the rest Midleton grain etc
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Mon Sep 11, 2006 4:16 pm

There are always exceptions... Paddy has Bushmills Malt and Midleton Grain but again at least you know.

I've always wondered about the blend with 40 malts etc... I don't really get it. Take a blend with 80% grain + 40 malts, that does not leave them much space to express themselves :shock:
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Postby Aidan » Mon Sep 11, 2006 4:18 pm

There's a minefield of crap you have to maneuver through when looking for a new blend, sure enough.
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Postby Aidan » Mon Sep 11, 2006 4:20 pm

irishwhiskeychaser wrote:There are always exceptions... Paddy has Bushmills Malt and Midleton Grain but again at least you know.

I've always wondered about the blend with 40 malts etc... I don't really get it. Take a blend with 80% grain + 40 malts, that does not leave them much space to express themselves :shock:


I think the idea is that it gives the blend more consistency. If you had three whiskys in a blend, and you lost access to one, they product would be totally different.
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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Mon Sep 11, 2006 4:31 pm

Aidan wrote:
irishwhiskeychaser wrote:There are always exceptions... Paddy has Bushmills Malt and Midleton Grain but again at least you know.

I've always wondered about the blend with 40 malts etc... I don't really get it. Take a blend with 80% grain + 40 malts, that does not leave them much space to express themselves :shock:


I think the idea is that it gives the blend more consistency. If you had three whiskys in a blend, and you lost access to one, they product would be totally different.




Good point, did not think of that... especially with the ownership of some distilleries changing on a regular basis or even closing.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Sep 11, 2006 6:19 pm

irishwhiskeychaser wrote:There are always exceptions... Paddy has Bushmills Malt and Midleton Grain but again at least you know.

I've always wondered about the blend with 40 malts etc... I don't really get it. Take a blend with 80% grain + 40 malts, that does not leave them much space to express themselves :shock:


I fully agree with you. I've no idea how a 20 - 40 malts can be fully recognised in a Blend - its a bit like Homeopathic Medicine - there a so few molecules left, there's nothing there that can contribute anything to the 'whole' ?!
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