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Issue 103 - The Irish Resurgence

Whisky Magazine Issue 103
April 2012


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The Irish Resurgence

Naren Youngdiscovers how the revival of Irish whiskey is being greeted behind the stick

Like any cocktail nerd, interested in where all these vintage and forgotten cocktails most people have never heard of, came from, I'm scouring through my modest collection of old cocktail books, looking for what I thought would be a plethora of drinks based on Irish whiskey. I'm a little dismayed then, to find that there are actually very few, especially of the sort that might sound as familiar as, say, the Manhattan, Gibson and their iconic brethren.

After all, wasn't it that small island that kicked off this whole whiskey business anyway? Irish whiskey was the darling of the American public's taste for whiskey right through the 19th century, up until that silly nonsense we called the ‘Noble Experiment' reared its ugly head and ultimately failed.

We saw fabulous drinks such as the Tipperary come to fruition; the Cameron's Kick, first mentioned in Harry MacElhone's ABC of Mixing Cocktails, is a jewel of a drink that has the strange addition of a little Scotch (ssh!), lemon and orgeat syrup. And I would be remiss not to at least mention the Irish Coffee, that velvet elixir that just warms the soul.

A quick look at what Google has to say about Irish whiskey cocktails and you'll be led to a mix of drinks whose names stretch from the clichéd to the downright comical: the Angry Irishman, the Blarney Stone, the Leprechaun, the Shamrock #2 or my personal favourite, the Plenty O'Toole.

You will also find the Irish Blackthorn, a very respectable drink that turns up at the turn ...

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