#334 • Jameson Select Reserve

40% alc./vol.
Irish Distillers Distillery, Cork, Ireland

It's been ages since I have not visited a glass of the best-selling Irish whiskey in the world.

The Jameson Select Reserve, also sometimes called the Black Barrel, behind closed doors, is a special edition resulting from the marriage of Irish Pot Still Whiskey and grain whiskeys elaborated in small batches. It is then aged in charred ex-barrels twice.

Founded in 1780 by John Jameson, the distillery now belongs to the French group Pernod Ricard, which sells more than 31 million bottles of Jameson annually.

As the American businessman and founder of the canned pastry empire who bears his name put it, Charles Alfred Pillsbury (1842-1899) said so well:

Money can not buy happiness. The one with ten million dollars is no happier than the one with nine million.

Nose:
Nice accents that do not lie about its Irish origin, but generally almost tasteless, on faint notes of vanilla and fruits that just do not want to break through. Barley background not to be neglected.

Taste:
As tasteless. Fruity and malty, though oily, but without much success.

Finish:
Short and easy to forget. Some notes of fruits in the distance.

Balance:
Really disappointing. By "Select Reserve", did they mean the reserve selected for a trip to the sink? No, it's the blow of the emotion, in fact it's not so bad. Although the representative who used it in Toronto did not seem to like his job, it did not stop me from buying a bottle once he returned to Quebec City.

Note: ★★★★★

#155 • Greenore 18 years old

46% alc./vol.
Cooley Distillery, Riverstown, Ireland

Last night, the Morrin Center had put on its most festive Christmas decorations to welcome the first whiskey of the first tasting of December Scotch Whiskey Club of Quebec. I'm talking about a rare Irish expression, thanks to François for having found it in California, the Greenore 18 years.

Made at the distillery Cooleywhich also produces the Kilbeggan and the Tyrconnell, Greenore is a particular whiskey in that it is composed of more corn than barley, distilled in column stills and aged exclusively in ex-barrels of bourbon.

Their core expression is maturing at eight years, but the 18 years that we taste here is of a rather superior singularity. From a limited edition to 4000 bottles, it is normal that we have the misery to find it. It is not filtered cold and hits us with a good 46% alcohol.

As the German physicist and Nobel laureate Werner Heisenberg put it:

If the grass is always greener in your neighbor's garden, let it be shit to mow ...

The light shows us a pale, dry color, almost like burned grass.

Nose:
Fruits and costarde come to pick us up first, to continue on a typical Irish nose of gingerbread and brown sugar.

Taste:
Sweet and honeyed, ample and generous. We pass the fruits of the festive cake with salted caramel, honey and sugar cane.

Finish:
Stay warm and long, fruity and spicy, like a Christmas album under the duvet the last Sunday morning before the 25.

Balance:
Excellent Irish whiskey. I do not know if price and rarity are worth the effort. But hey, like all the Irish whiskeys evoke me Christmas, I just miss a good old CD of James Last to be totally in the mood.

Note: ★ ★ ★ ★