88

Score

Midleton Very Rare 2003 Vintage, 40%

Price: $110 Issue: Fall 2005 Reviewer: John Hansell

Named for the distillery of the same name, and where many other well-know Irish blends are produced (including Jameson, Powers, Paddy, and Tullamore Dew). This is the distillery’s ultra-premium blend offering. The whiskey is somewhat shy and bashful in personality (when compared to its pure pot still siblings like Redbreast and the quite rare Jameson 15 year old) and really takes some patience to appreciate its subtle beauty. Sweet notes of honeyed malt and vanilla up front, with a hint of marshmallow and summer fruits. The palate eventually dries out nicely and deepens, evolving into a medley of subtle spice. Very drinkable.