Re-Peat After Me:

Lugnaquilla Irish Whisky

The Barrel Hunter

There are times when we go on a whisky quest for a particular bottle.  Other times, it finds us.  This review comes to you thanks to the latter.  

There are many familiar names in Irish Whiskey:  Jameson, Teeling, Powers, Bushmills to rhyme off but a few.  And with the continued boom in Irish Whiskey, it’s great to see more new ones.  Like, Lugnaquilla for example.  While many enjoy Irish Whiskey’s light orchard fruity approach, there are some peated expressions from the Emerald Isle as well such as Dunville’s 3 Crown, The Connemara, oh… and Lugnaquilla.

Lugnaquilla (pronounced Log Na Coille) peated Irish Whiskey is produced for The Barrel Hunter Corporation in Vaughn, Ontario, who partner up with different distilleries around the world to create gins, vodkas, tequilas, wines, and whiskies.

I turn my attention to the quest at hand – exploring this new and/or new-to-me whiskey.  Waiting patiently in my glass is a rich and polished yellow gold hued dram.  (My nose taps me on my shoulder to stop staring.  Fine.)  Naturally, I was expecting a trip into Phenolia.  However, what I got was a lot more:  orchard fruits, baking spices and vanilla.  Yes, I welcomed light wafts of smoke, as if to mirror how Lugnaquilla’s font appears on the label.  Here though, I don’t find the peatiness elbowing its way to the front; rather, it’s part of a superbly balanced presentation.  Earthy, rich, fruity, sweet, and smoky.

On the tongue, again, a delicious well distributed arrival of flavours delivers on the promise first given to the nose.  Here though, the spiciness slash pepperiness has more presence in amongst the vanilla, sweet smoke, and orchard fruit notes.  The richness of the flavours deftly brings full circle to Lugnaquilla’s gold-coloured assertion in the glass – rich. As for the finish, it’s warm, friendly, and lasts as long as its name.

Was it serendipity that I happened on this bottle?  Was it fate?  Either way, I’m glad Lugnaquilla and I crossed paths.  This isn’t a Peat Monster, Peat Beast, or a Peat Ogre.  This is more like a Peat Swan – elegant and not peatly overpowering.  Granted, depending on what your palate is in the mood for, you can either reach for the Monster or the Swan.  All I know is, after this first experience, Lugnaquilla will be a re-peat for me.  Cheers.

Tasting Notes

Colour:  Yellow Gold.

Nose:  Vanilla; fruit, earthy, smoke, and baking spices.

Taste:  Vanilla, peat, ginger, spices, smoke, and fruit..

Finish:  Long and warm.