The creation of this whiskey stemmed from master blender Billy Leighton and blender Dave McCabe hand selecting their favourite casks from Midleton’s inventory, before combining them to create one whiskey. Leighton’s choice was laid down in a first fill oloroso sherry butt in May 1990, while McCabe’s choice laid down in a first fill bourbon barrel in November 1991.
The producer has described the whiskey as having nose notes of dried herbs and earthy tones combine with hints of antique furniture, a dark roasted coffee and honey-menthol mouthfeel, followed by a long and satisfying rich finish.
Leighton said on the whiskey: “Bottling these outstanding casks together at precisely the right moment has resulted in an incredibly complex Irish whiskey that harmoniously balances the vanilla sweetness and caramel creaminess from the bourbon barrel and the deep, dark fruitiness from the sherry butt. With an ABV of 56.9%, the resulting liquid is rich in robust spice with wood-driven characteristics and notes of dark-roasted coffee, sweet liquorice, orange peel and smoked almonds amplified by the wine cask’s influence.”
Launched for World Whisky Day, there are only 714 bottles made available, which are to be made available through an online ballot hosted on Redbreast’s online members’ club The Birdhouse at an RRP of €550. The bottles are presented in a keepsake book made from recyclable cardboard.
McCabe continued: “The traditional Redbreast style is so often associated with the influence of sherry casks that we sometimes overlook the role bourbon casks play in its composition. I am honoured to have been able to select my perfectly aged dream bourbon cask for this year’s Dream Cask and to pay homage to that unbeatable harmony that makes Redbreast so special. We are incredibly fortunate that we have the variety of aged stock at Midleton Distillery to explore and make our dreams a reality. Sharing our discovery with whiskey drinkers across the world is one of the most exciting and joyful aspects of my role to date.”
The ballot will be open for entries from a variety of countries across the world, open from May 23 to May 30.