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Drink Review: Kilbeggan Traditional Irish Whiskey

Kilbeggan is a blended Irish whiskey made at Cooley distillery in County Louth. Named after the distillery of the same name dating back to 1757, this is an elegant, sweet and malty blend.

Kilbeggan Traditional Irish Whiskey  Nose:

Toasted grain, yeast, and a pleasant citrus note, faint honey and vanilla, slight anise and cloves

 Kilbeggan Traditional Irish Whiskey  Taste:

Gently sweet and noticeable grainy, almost zwieback like on the palate.

 Kilbeggan Traditional Irish Whiskey  Finish:

Dry with a toasted cereal taste, no burn whatsoever.

 Kilbeggan Traditional Irish Whiskey  Mouthfeel:

Midweight, syrupy enough to coat your mouth, but not overly thick.

Kilbeggan Traditional Irish Whiskey Pros:

  • Elegant, with a sweet, pleasant taste
  • Specific grain note (white bread?)
  • A good whiskey for the price


This is definitely interesting. It’s got a very specific grain note to it that tastes a little like zwieback. It’s funny to say zwieback because I associate that flavor with carbs, and I feel like it has an appealing weighty quality to it. It also has a certain grainy muffin-like note. The nose is interesting enough, but the taste is less distinct than the nose, and it leaves you preferring the nose to the actual taste. The finish is purely dry, but it has a certain grainy taste on the finish.

In this case, it tastes like breakfast, but not in a breakfast whiskey kind of way. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not overly sweet or buttery. But the grain note in this certainly makes me want to have some toast, toasted bread, eggs and bacon, a bagel, I could go on. It’s got a nice warm feeling to it that reminds me of coming in from the cold, or a good breakfast with friends.

Kilbeggan Traditional Irish Whiskey Original Review:

The Kilbeggan Distillery sits on the island in the middle of the Royal Canal. It’s a rare rural distillery and I’ve heard some stories about how it’s housed in one of the oldest buildings in Ireland, and that they had to repurpose it into a distillery at some point. Some of my favorite Irish whiskeys – Midleton and Bushmills – are both built in urban towns with warehouses. Instead, they chose to build a distillery in an old town with an old warehouse. I’m always excited to see distillers more interested in the history of whiskey instead of just the capitalizing on whiskey’s newfound popularity.

Kilbeggan is a blended whiskey, but it occurs to me that I’ve not seen much info about just what this is a blend of. I was going to buy a bottle last time I was in Ireland, but decided I wanted to keep my trip a trip to get into some single malt. It seems to be a blend of Irish grain whiskey, which I imagine must be a nice mix, and a vatting of some of the more popular Irish brands like Redbreast and Powers. It’s currently on the shelf in the states for about $30, so I’m hoping it’s a nice smooth blended whiskey where you won’t even notice the graininess of the blends.

  • A unique take on a classic Irish Whiskey
  • Overall a very pleasant, sweet and smooth whiskey
  • Ultimately, an Irish Whiskey worth trying and enjoying.

 

Written by Mark Adams

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