WHISKEY DREAMS – Redbreast 12 Year Old

I bought my bottle of Redbreast on Friday and was just plain thrilled that my local store actually had a bottle on the shelf. Just one, but still, there was a bottle there for me to buy, and boy am I so glad they did.

I’ve been on an Irish Whiskey journey over the last few weeks, and Redbreast was the next logical step. At the end of the day Friday I had done a little bit of damage to the bottle, and Saturday I spent the day binge watching television with my wife and drinking all afternoon. The end result, by the time I poured a sip to finalize my review today was a bottle that was almost empty.

What’s left of my Redbreast bottle.

I don’t drink beer or wine anymore, but when I did, I usually drank light beer. My dad and brother loved darker beers, but it took me years to try a Golden Monkey by Victory. I remember being shocked at how much flavor the Golden Monkey had compared to regular light beer – and I fell in love. That is the best way to describe Redbreast for me. I just found Jameson Distiller’s Safe and thought it would take me another year to find something better. So I am both shocked and surprised that I found this Redbreast, and how much fuller it is than Jameson Distiller’s Safe.

Yes, I know that Jameson and Redbreast are both owned by the same French drinks conglomerate Pernod Ricard, which owns Irish Distillers, which in turn produces ten or so other brands of spirits, and I can taste the Jameson heritage in Redbreast.

Since Jameson is a blend, it is very likely I am indeed tasting a bit of it in Redbreast, or maybe it should really be the other way around? Redbreast is a single pot still Irish whiskey, while Jameson is a blend of of both pot-distilled malt whiskey and column-distilled grain whiskey, meaning that Jameson is blending some of what Redbreast is with cheaper column distilled grain whiskey, which also explains the slightly higher price of Redbreast.

You can already guess that I thoroughly enjoyed my first bottle of Redbreast by the damage I did the bottle over just three days, but how did it it rank? First of all, let me say it earned these awards.

Redbreast Awards

The nose is rich and nutty with well balanced hints of ginger mixed with a subtle sweetness. The nose hints at greatness to come, and that first sip only fulfills every promise the nose is making. Redbreast is smooth and rich and lingers on the palate in a very enjoyable way. It is both smooth and complex and rich, which is no easy feat, earning Redbreast the highest score so far with a 96/100.

Redbreast 12 Year

Pros

  • Clean nose full of nutty richness and sweet cakes.
  • The palate is complex and every time I think I’ve tasted every dimension something else opens up.
  • Blends spice and toffee perfectly.
  • The sherry casks complete the finish of every sip with a subtle sweetness that makes every touch of the lips to the glass seem like the finest dessert.

Cons:

  • I bought the only bottle my local store had.
  • A bit pricey at $80, and worse yet, it is worth every penny. So now I want more!!!
BottleScorePrice
Old Forester 1920 Prohibition Style Bourbon96$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 12 Year96$80 / 750ml
Jameson Distiller's Safe95$65 / 750ml
Colonel E.H. Taylor Small Batch Bourbon94$45 / 750ml
Booker's "Sip Awhile" 2017-493$80 / 750ml
Knappogue Castle 14 Year92$68 / 750ml
Bib & Tucker91$75 / 750ml
Dublin Liberties Copper Alley Irish Whiskey90$75 / 750ml
Angels Envy90$65 / 750ml
Tyrconnel 16 Year88$95 / 750ml
Powers Three Swallow87$38 / 750ml
Knappognue Castle 12 Year87$55 / 750ml
Tyrconnel Single Malt87$49 / 750ml
Green Spot86$75/ 750ml
Tin Cup85$30 / 750ml
Jameson Triple Triple85$45 / 750ml
Smooth Ambler Old Scout Whiskey84$40 / 750ml
Kilbeggan Traditional Irish Whiskey84$30 / 750ml
Uncle Nearest 185684$55 / 750ml
Lambay Cognac Finish83$65 / 750ml
Jameson Caskmates Stout Edition83$50 / 750ml
Glenmorangie The Original 10 Year82$50 / 750ml
Jameson Blender's Dog82$67 / 750ml
Jameson Black Barrel81$39 / 750ml
Redwood Empire Pipe Dream Bourbon81$45 / 750ml
Jameson80$40 / 750ml
Old Forester 187080$55 / 750ml
Don Julio 194280$160 / 750ml
Monkey Shoulder79$35 / 750ml
Old Forester 189779$55 / 750ml
Michters US 1 Small Batch79$45 / 750ml
Yellowstone78$35 / 750ml
Chestnut Farms Bourbon77$45 / 750ml
West Cork77$30 / 750ml
Eagle Rare 10 Year Old Bourbon75$35 / 750ml
Basil Hayden's75$35 / 750ml
Old Forester Statesman75$65 / 750ml
Slane74$33 / 750ml
Hirsch Small Batch74$35 / 750ml
Glendalough Double Barrel Irish Whiskey74$45 / 750ml
Tullamore D.E.W 12 Year73$50 / 750ml
Clyde May's Original Alabama Style Whiskey72$33 / 750ml
Legent72$35 / 750ml
Bushmills 10 Year72$50 / 750ml
Proper Twelve71$30 / 750ml
Teeling Whiskey70$50 / 750ml
Mr. Whidkey70$22 / 750ml
Redbreast Lustau 12 Year Old70$80/ 750ml
Tullamore Dew Crock69$40 / 750ml
Tito's Vodka69$30 / 750ml
Bird Dog Kentucky Bourbon68$22 / 750ml
Death's Door68$40 / 750ml
Cruzan No. 9 Spiced Rum67$20 / 750ml
Appleton Reserve Blend Jamaican Rum67$30 / 750ml
McConnell’s Irish Whisky66$25 / 750ml
Paddy’s Irish Whiskey66$33 / 750ml
Beer Barrel Bourbon66$35 / 750ml
Four Roses Small Batch66$30 / 750ml
Kavanagh 16 Year Single Malt Irish Whiskey66$50 / 750ml
Quiet Man Traditional65$40 / 750ml
Gentleman Jack65$35 / 750ml
Powers Gold Label Irish Whiskey65$35 / 750ml
Kraken Rum64$25 / 750ml
Wild Turkey63$35 / 750ml
Tullamore Dew63$25 / 750ml
Bushmills Irish Whiskey62$31 / 750ml
Stillhouse Black Bourbon61$20 / 750ml
Writers Tears61$35 / 750ml
Maker's Mark60$25 / 750ml
Jefferson60$25/ 750ml
Old Grand-Dad 11459$30 / 750ml
Fighting Cock58$18 / 750ml
Elijah Craig57$27 / 750ml
Bulleit Bourbon56$28 / 750ml
Buffalo Trace55$25 / 750ml
The Sexton54$40 / 750ml
Fistful of Bourbon53$40 / 750ml
Kilbrin 10 Year Single Malt52$55 / 750ml
Jack Daniels`51$25 / 750ml
Howler Head50$25 / 750ml
Agitator Kentucky Bourbon50$30 / 750ml
Knob Creek Small Batch49$30 / 750ml
Blade and Bow48$50 / 750ml
Widow Jane45$70 / 750ml
Teeling Single Malt43$65 / 750ml
GlenGoyne 12 Year42$75/ 750ml
Dogfish Head Alternate Takes41$55/ 750ml
Redemption40$30 / 750ml
Rowan's Creek39$30 / 750ml
Hudson Whiskey Baby Bourbon38$50 / 750ml
Woodford Reserve30$13 / 50ml
Breaker29$60 / 750ml
Pure Kentucky28$40 / 750ml
Stranahan's Single Malt27$65 / 750ml
Egan’s Fortitude Irish Whiskey26$50 / 750ml
Winchester Extra Smooth15$23 / 750ml
Jack Daniels Tennessee Honey10$20 / 750ml
Hill Billy9$20 / 750ml
Fireball5$18 / 750ml
Busker Single Malt4$34 / 750ml
Kavanagh Single Malt Irish Whiskey3$35 / 750ml
Balvenie Caribbean Cask2$90 / 750ml
American XXX Born - Bourbon Whiskey1$26 / 750ml