Waterford Irish Single Malt Rathclogh 1.1

Single Farm Origin Irish Malted Barley

Waterford intrigued me with their incredible dedication to Terroir. Each bottle includes a plethora of detail about the land where the barley was grown, history of the farm, soil composition, even a audio file of the sounds of Rathclogh farm. All of the details about Rathclogh can be found on Waterford’s site. I implore you to check it out and see the attention and dedication to the fine details whisky geeks will love.

Bottled at just under 4 years of age, the spirit was then aged in a variety of casks. 31% First fill bourbon, 19% virgin oak, 25% french wine casks, as well as 25% sherry casks. The final product was then bottled at 50% abv.

I rested this for a brief 5 minutes in a Túath Irish whisky glass and did not add any water. Pale gold in color with thick legs in the glass.

Soft, delicate aromas with quite a fair bit of alcohol vapors. Almonds, flowers, and pear make up the boldest scents. Salted butter. Distinct oak and woodsy notes that remind me of cold, wet camping trips. Dew. Floral honey. Light pepper and clove cigarettes. Complex nose to describe but simple in it’s composition. With some drops of water, this burn honey candy flavor comes out.

Thin mouthfeel and I’m not a fan. It’s like a watery maple syrup. Heavy spices that overtake the malt quite a bit. Ash, coal, and lots of charred barrel notes for such a young spirit. Water softens that tannic bitterness and welcomes a more appealing tobacco flavor in it’s place. Some faint apple, pear and dark cherry flavor develops.

Harsh, burnt peppercorns on the finish. A wild berry flavor lingers on the tongue like a blackberry tart. Tobacco and old leather. Musty clothes. Water really helps out the finish. Less of those harsh burnt spices and more green grass and hay. Fresh mineral water. Wisps of apple and cinnamon.

I love spirits that transport me. To me, this seems like the perfect camping whisky. That wet grass, woodsy element really resonated with me. With a bit more age and mellowing I’d bet something around 6 years old might change that harsh bitterness into a more rounded whisky. Overall, it really reminds me of Bruichladdich’s Classic Laddie and if not for the fancy bottle, I bet it would be a similar price. I personally think this is a try before you buy bottle. I want to try more from Waterford as I like the geeky terrior element but blind buying a whole bottle might be a bit steep.