Lots of great things have been happening in Ireland related to whiskey over the past few years with new distilleries opening up, old ones dusting off years of inactivity, and even the big players beginning to offer new and exciting variations. The Quiet Man hand crafted Irish whiskey, however, comes slightly out of left field. American spirits company Luxco has partnered with Niche Drinks, in Derry Ireland, to bring you not one, but two varieties of the first Irish whiskey to be bottled in the city in over 100 years.
The story of the Quiet Man was born out of Niche Drinks managing director and co-owner, Ciaran Mulgrew’s desire to honor his father, John Mulgrew.
“The Quiet Man is a completely unique combination of hand selected whiskies, finished in first-fill bourbon barrels, creating sweet and spicy notes,” Ciaran Mulgrew said. “In more than 50 years behind the bar, my father saw and heard it all, but like all good bartenders, John Mulgrew was true to the code and told no tales. He was ‘The Quiet Man,’ or as they say in the pubs of Ireland, ‘An Fear Ciuin.’”
The Quiet Man is distilled in traditional Irish pot stills and then matured in oak barrels, before being finished in first fill bourbon casks to give it additional complexity. It will be available in two varieties, an 8 year old single malt, as well as a blend, both of which coming in at 80 proof / 40% ABV and in 750ml bottles.
The Quiet Man Traditional Blended Irish Whiskey is aged for four years, contains a higher malt percentage compared to other blends, and offers a more mellow and smooth finish. It will retail for a suggested $39.99 when it hits stores in the US this January and is currently available in Germany, South Africa, Canada, and of course Ireland. The Quiet Man Single Malt offers a smooth taste as well as floral notes which give it that premium, single malt experience and will retail for $49.99 alongside it’s partner.
“The difference between a good whiskey and a great whiskey lies not just in picking the best ingredients and having the most skilled distiller,” Mulgrew added. “It lies in selecting the finest barrels to let the whiskey mature in. Our unique process of finishing the aging in barrels that previously held bourbon but never whiskey allows The Quiet Man to soak up those wonderfully sweet yet spicy oak flavors, and the result is two great Irish whiskies.”
I’m excited to try these two out and compare them to other new releases from the Emerald Isle.