The first limited release in the innovative series, Redbreast Kentucky Oak Edition, is made from malted and unmalted barley, triple distilled in copper pot stills and aged in American Bourbon oak barrels and Spanish Oloroso sherry butts, before being finished for a period of 3 to 7 months in naturally air-dried PEFC certified American oak1 from the Taylor family’s Elk Cave farm in Kentucky. These barrels have been hand-selected for finishing, using the finest quality white oak, to impart extra sweet notes of vanilla and high woody spice.
“Redbreast is renowned for its strong sherry influence,” says Master Blender Billy Leighton. “That can often mean his ex-bourbon counterpart is overlooked, even though Kentucky white oak barrels, which previously contained bourbon, are central to Redbreast’s DNA. This series explores the role American white oak plays in the composition of Redbreast, and takes it a step further, with a finishing touch in virgin casks to allow the wood’s contribution to really take center stage.”
In pursuit of the finest quality barrels, Leighton and the team at Midleton Distillery have teamed up with owners of Elk Cave Farm, Clifton and sons Steven and Scott Taylor, to source high-quality white oak from their 1,300-acre logging operation. As committed environmentalists, the Taylor family have championed sustainable farming practices since purchasing the land in 1959 and today are recognized nationwide for the award-winning methods used on their farm. Under the tutelage of the Taylor family, Elk Cave Farm became famous for successfully applying the oak timber system to its mature oak forests. Shelterwood, a forestry technique that emphasizes early nurturing of oak saplings by improving forest light conditions and reducing competitors, has proven effective in the Taylors’ mission to sustainably manage their oak forests. Additionally, these productive oak forests will provide valuable wildlife habitat, clean water and fresh air today and for future generations.
Once felled, sawn and air-dried, the oak was worked into 63 casks and shipped to the Midleton Distillery, Co. Liege, to be filled with a bespoke batch of Redbreast whisky. Leighton and his team diligently monitored the barrels until the perfect balance of flavor, aroma and wood contribution was achieved.
Further reinforcing Midleton’s pioneering spirit, the result is luxuriously smooth and distinctly Redbreast with an added layer of sweet vanilla and high wood spice imparted from the virgin. Kentucky barrels. Bottled at 101 degrees (50.5% ABV), the unchillfiltered whiskey effortlessly balances the spice and dried fruits of the pot still with the complex aroma of freshly cut cedar wood and decadent notes of almond and of brown sugar caramel for a high flavor profile.
“Making this whiskey has been a journey of discovery,” adds Leighton. “From learning about the Taylor family’s pioneering work improving the sustainability of America’s oak forests, to exploring the region’s influence on our whisky, it’s all shaped this deliciously complex whiskey. The Kentucky Oak series demonstrates the continued evolution of Redbreast, setting the bar for subsequent expressions in the series.”
Scott Taylor adds: “Our family is honored to work alongside the Redbreast team, witnessing firsthand their passion and dedication to creating exceptional tasting whisky. Just like whiskey making, arboriculture requires patience. and faith that future generations will reap the benefits of the decisions we make It has been incredibly rewarding to see this project come to fruition and to see our Kentucky the oak shapes the flavor of a Redbreast Irish Whiskey.”
Redbreast Kentucky Oak will be exclusively available in the United States from June at a minimum SRP of $95.99. For more information and selected resellers, visit the Redbreast website: www.redbreastwhiskey.com.
Nose: Opens with notes of freshly cut cedarwood, almond and vanilla, while luscious dark berries resting on new oak chips enhance the influences of sweet fruit and warming charred wood, complementing the spice of the still.
To taste: Spicy hints of cinnamon, nutmeg and clove that continue to develop over time working in tandem with the rich tannins of oak while being balanced with hints of autumnal fruit that linger delicately in the background with soft and decadent notes of brown sugar caramel and vanilla.
Finish: Long lasting finish with the fruits first to fade slowly, letting the still potted spices linger effortlessly in harmony with the soft tones and complex nature of the American oak.
About Redbreast Irish Whiskey
Redbreast is the most awarded Single Pot Still Irish whiskey in the world. ** With a full range of expressions from 12 to 15, 21 and 27 – as well as Redbreast Lustau Edition & Cask Strength, Redbreast has built a worldwide reputation for excellence by marrying a combination of the finest whiskeys aged in pot in the world created at the famous Midleton Distillery in Cork and finish them in a combination of the finest bourbon, sherry and port casks.
Please taste responsibly. REDBREAST® Irish Whiskey. 40% Alc./Vol. (Event 80). Product of Ireland. Imported by Pernod Ricard UNITED STATES, New York, NY.
About Pernod Ricard UNITED STATES
Pernod Ricard UNITED STATES is the premium spirits and wine company in the United States and the largest subsidiary of Paris, France-based Pernod Ricard SA., the second largest spirits and wine company in the world. Pernod Ricard employs approximately 19,000 people worldwide, is listed on the Euronext (Ticker: RI) and is part of the CAC 40 indexes. Pernod Ricard UNITED STATES has its headquarters at New York, New York, and has more than 800 employees across the country. The company’s core spirits include such prestigious brands as Absolute®Vodka, Plane® Tequila, Chivas Regal® Scotch Whiskey, The Glenlivet® Single Malt Scotch Whisky, jameson® Irish whiskey, Kahlua® Liquor, Malibu®, Martell®Cognac, Olmeca Altos® Tequila, Beefeater®Gin, Delete Unique village of Maguey® MezcalGin Monkey 47®, Gin Plymouth®, Seagram’s® Extra Dry Gin, Malfy®Gin, Hiram Walker® liquor, Midleton® Irish Whiskey, Powers® Irish Whiskey, Redbreast® Irish Whiskey, Aberlour® Single Malt Scotch Whisky; Lillet®; Smithworks®, Jefferson’s® bourbon, Smooth Ambler® whiskey, Rabbit Hole® whiskey, Pernod® and Richard®; superior wines such as Jacob’s Creek®, Kenwood® Vineyards, Campo Viejo® and Brancott Estate®; and champagnes and sparkling wines as exquisite as Perrier toy®Champagne, G.H. Mumm™ Champagne and Mumm Napa® Sparkling Wines.
**Based on international awards received by the brand in major spirits competitions from 2011 to 2021.
Pernod Ricard UNITED STATES
E-mail: [email protected]
1 The Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) is an international, not-for-profit, non-governmental organization that promotes sustainable forest management through independent third-party certification. Elk Farm has been verified by independent experts as a sustainably managed forest in accordance with strict international standards.
SOURCEPernod Ricard UNITED STATES