What to drink now: Redbreast Irish Whiskey

It’s time to finally talk about whiskey. If you’re like me, the thought of whiskey can be quite daunting; the strong hit it gives your nostrils, the first sip that puts the fire in your chest and tears in your eyes. Yet, all of the best rom-com characters and the heroes I have idolised as a kid all enjoy a cocktail with some form of whiskey in it. Let’s be honest, we’ve all wished we could be that cool person who orders an Old Fashioned at the bar, instead of our usual Piña Colada – I know I don’t enjoy being the only grown-up ordering a Strawberry Daiquiri at dinner. Now, this isn’t an article to expose and shame all of us who enjoy our drinks with a pint of sugar on the side, this is all about shining a different light on an alcohol usually reserved for the brave and mighty. It’s time for us sweet-toothed, casual adventurers to find the romance in Whiskey.

 

Photo credit: Sadhbh Kenny

 

On behalf of Verge, I was treated to something that was much needed; a full breakdown of how to experience and enjoy all that Irish whiskey has to offer – with all romantic bells and whistles attached. What is a better way to widen our whiskey horizons than to be in one of the most beautiful places in the world? A place where culture, wonder and nature combine to produce, not only some of the most friendly people on earth, but some of the most sought-after and cherished wines and ports on the planet. To celebrate the latest revolution in depth and flavours that is the Iberian series, Redbreast Irish Whiskey ‘whisked’ us away to the charming valleys of Douro, Portugal to really immerse ourselves in all things Portuguese. We cooked delicious historic dishes, witnessed the true immensity of the Douro vineyards and explored all types of incredible terrain- all while staying in complete luxury at the esteemed Vidago Palace Hotel.  We learned an incredible amount of how much care, passion and planning goes into a single glass of whiskey, especially when it comes to Redbreast’s latest creation: Redbreast Tawny Port Cask Edition.

 

In our fast and modern everyday lives, we don’t tend to think about all the hands that have played a part in getting our food and drink to our tables. This trip really emphasised the power of humans, and how wonderful it can be when we work together to produce something sensational. Each drop, note and sip of the Redbreast Tawny Port Cask Edition was carefully engineered to tell a story of blending cultures together to create liquid harmony- even for those who are used to the softer end of the drink menu.

 

While being treated like royalty wherever we went, each activity we participated in had a purpose of introducing us to the humble roots of where the Iberian series began. From gazing at the Douro River from patterned vineyards above, to enjoying the finest alfresco dining experiences overflowing with a home-style, family-reunion atmosphere. We must admit, we found ourselves in awe of the generations of expertise, dedication and patience it takes to fill every glass. In this particular case, what makes Redbreast Tawny Port Cask Edition special is the use of casks previously used during the port aging process. Which means that the notes of Portugal’s finest grapes are fully intertwined with the smooth and rich single pot still Irish whiskey flavours.

 

Photo credit: Sadhbh Kenny

 

We spent the entire trip in the company of Irish whiskey royalty thanks to Master Blender Billy Leighton and Blender David McCabe. Through spending twelve years creating and perfecting the bold Iberian series, Leighton and McCabe stress the importance of engaging the senses and highlighting the subtle hints in each sip.

 

We explored the power of discovering the best ways to enjoy whiskey uniquely, while treating our taste buds to the finest Portuguese custard, creamy risottos and luscious olive oil. These full-bodied tastes perfectly align with the key characteristics that make Redbreast Tawny Port Cask Edition special. This is the first whiskey we’ve had the pleasure of describing as buttery, tangy, sweet and warm – which perfectly summarises what Portugal is known for.

There’s a certain feeling of class when you’ve found an age appropriate drink you’re not embarrassed to say out loud in public. Our new-found respect and adoration for whiskey was perfectly paired with walking down the atmospheric and enchanting halls of the Vidago Palace Hotel- which, ironically, must have been designed by Walt Disney himself. We have Redbreast to thank for opening our eyes to the wonderful world of whiskey and how it can be a gentle transportation to beautiful memories with each taste. If you’re looking for a sample of Douro sunshine alongside a dash of Irish charm, we cannot recommend Redbreast Tawny Port Cask Edition enough. We are most definitely looking forward to tasting new creations and making brand new memories with those we love. We cannot wait to see what is next in the Iberian series, and we will never forget our magical Northern Portuguese adventure.

Redbreast Tawny Port Cask Edition is bottled at 46% and will be available from 18 September in the USA, Ireland, UK, China, Australia, Canada, France, Germany, Global Travel and online at the RRP of €100, £79, $100.

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