The first Irish whisky for the blog is also one of the most widely available. The No Age statement version of Tullamore D.E.W
The distillery was opened in 1829 in the town of Tullamore by Michael Molloy. On his death his nephew Bernard Daly inherited the site and put Daniel E Williams in charge as general manager. It is Mr Williams who is credited with investing and building the production facilities in Tullamore.
The Williams family would eventually own the distillery in the 1930’s when the Daly family gave up their interest in the business. This period was a troubled one for a lot of Irish distillers with competition from Scotland, prohibition in America and a trade war generally with the UK. The Williams family started to make a heather wine using a small amount of whisky, heather honey and herbs. This meant whisky production at Tullamore stopped in 1953. Future whisky requirements would come from John Powers & Sons who got use of the Tullamore brand to bottle their whisky.
In recent times the Tullamore whisky in shops has been a brand for the Midleton Distillery owned by Irish Distillers. The brand was bought along with the other spirit brands in the C&C Group portfolio by Grant & Sons in 2010 for 300 millions euros.
With production dependent on Midleton distillery which Grant’s does not own the decision was made to bring production back to Tullamore in 2012 with the creation of a new distillery. The first phase was complete in 2014 which provides the ability to make malt and pot still whisky. Phase two will involve adding in a Coffey still to produce grain whisky so until that is complete the grain whisky requirements of Tullamore are still coming from Midleton distillery.
The Tullamore DEW entry level bottle is a no age statement blended whiskey. The blend contains malt whisky, pot still whiskey made from a mash of malted and unmalted barley and finally grain whisky made from grains other than barley usually in a Coffey still. The whiskey is triple stilled as is the Irish style and bottled at 40% ABV.
This particular version is available widely all over the world however other expressions are much harder to find especially those with an age statement. The price of this bottle will vary widely with offers very common but as a benchmark it is here for £22.95.
Colour – Golden Yellow
Nose – sour apples, cereals, oranges and lemons
Palate – spicy with honey and vanilla
Finish – more of the honey and oak tannin. vegetation and herbs in the finish
I remember enjoying this more the last time I tried it than this time around. Perhaps my tastes have changed but I remember it being more fruity before and less spicy. It feels very conservative this blend with nothing out of the ordinary to challenge the drinker. It does not give a house style which makes it stand out from the increasing number of brands in the Irish market which is a shame.
With William Grants now in charge and investing in a new distillery the future looks good for the Tullamore brand. I just hope there is more interesting bottles to look forward to in the future.