Think Irish and you are immediately taken to crowded pubs, euphonic songs, loud banter, alcohol over counter tops, thick accents, thick, long, brown-grey beards and beer fattened bellies! And it was these very joyous moments at the local watering hole between playwriters, poets and storytellers that gave inpiration to the distillers at the Walsh Whiskey Distillery when coining a name for their spirit – The Writer’s Tears (guessing happy tears!)
The Walsh Whiskey distillery is an independent bottler, meaning they procure their whiskies from other distilleries – mostly Jameson and the likes; blending and bottling them to their own tastes and preferences. This expression in particular is a blend of single malts and single pot stilled whiskies; though traditionally pot stills might also distill wort from other grains like corn, wheat or oats; the Writer’s Tears is void of any grain other than a combination of malted and unmalted barley. The spirit is triple distilled and matured exclusively in flame charred American Ex-bourbon casks and blended at the distillery itself, hence keeping with the “Single” Malt / Pot Still title.
The bottle comes in a thin, yet narrow, long necked bottle. The labelling is trendy and modern, with an uber cool “WT” etched off the side of the label and a tear cut off its center. The bottle also has a tear embossed across the chest and the brand name tattooed along the heel, with details of the whiskey splashed across in a mix of standard and rustic fonts.
ABV : 40%
Eye : Deep Gold – Copper| Caramel Colouring, Non Chill Filtered
Nose : Spicy cinnamon and grain with herbal nuances interleaved between a mist of brine and the sweetness of vanilla. Some fruitiness, emanating from slices of green apples, over ripened pears and chocolate followed by dried oak and dry grass.
Taste: Sweet and rich initially, giving the feel of porridge with a drizzle of honey. A whiff of brine is complimented with a mild woodiness and with hints of char. Vanilla, prunes and a few tropical notes are evident tampering with a pinch of pepper.
Finish : Caramel complimented with some woody spice and mint |Medium finish
The whiskey is medium bodied, with good consistency and a lovely mouth feel, telling me there could be a few older aged spirits blended into the concoction. Simple, straight and not at all convoluted, the Writer’s Tears is smooth and easy going. The sweet and herbal fusion is a fresh and lovely surprise, but in saying that it does tend to get a bit weak with time, but still bring with it a medium to long sweet finish.
At AUD $70-80, it’s a tad bit over the average Irish price range but does hold its ground quite well; this is worth the try and the charred American oak incorporates an added stroke of smoke and spice!
Preference – Neat, with a teaspoon of water or ‘on the rocks’!