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KCM Spirit Reviews

Sunday, March 10, 2013

Review 148: Michael Collins Blended Whiskey

Review 148
Michael Collins Blended Whiskey: 40% abv

Background: Michael Collins was a Irish Revolutionary leader who lived from 1890-1922, who also played a lot of political roles as well. We don’t want to get into history a whole lot, but I did want let you know what this whiskey refers to. And it should come as no surprises considering the fiercely patriotic nature of the Irish heritage. And surely, Collins seemed like a noble figure, dying in a firefight instead of fleeing his men on a transport vehicle as others had wished of him. Cheers to your bravery, Mr. Collins. What about the whiskey, you are screaming now I imagine. Michael Collins is distilled at Cooley distillery, and they produce two different types of whiskey: blended and single malt Irish whiskey. Today, we are reviewing the blend, which is interestingly double distilled, not triple distilled. When we get to a Redbreast review, I will talk about why triple distillation is preferred for Irish Whiskey, but until then, we’ll move on. This particular whiskey does not have an age statement. 

Nose: Strong, hot, honey, apple, wheat, slight vanilla, slightly bitter wood, corn, dry vegetal notes, not complex, lacking in flavor
            A/W: Fruiter, more open, more enjoyable
Arrival: Bitter start, creamy, vanilla, lemon, grapefruit, slight spice notes
            A/W: Fruitier, sweeter, sugar notes, apple, pineapple
Body: Bitter fruit, alocohol-like body
            A/W: Brings forth fruitiness, sugar, pineapple, apple, bitter tea, and still retains dry character
Finish: Bitter grapefruit, sweet lemon and honey, peach, hot, spicy, dry spice, pepper, bitter tea
A/W: Bitter, fruity, sweetness, better balance

Final Comments: Michael Collins is certainly a strong-minded whiskey, not having the smooth integrity that Jameson or Bushmill’s flaunt. That doesn’t make this whiskey less unique, but it lacks smoothness and we question if the fermentation wasn’t slightly rushed on this whiskey. At any rate, you wouldn’t be shocked that this came from Cooley distillery, and there is no surprise that this isn’t triple distilled. This whiskey, at 40%, does not stand out or appear to shine in the face of competition, but it does add some unique, difference that you won’t get from the Jameson or Bushmill’s labels at that price point. But as long as Collins is standing out, KCM believes they should stand out at 46%.

Why you’d buy it: You want to try something other than the traditions, and you’re not afraid of roughness

Why you wouldn’t: Kilbeggan offers you the same uniqueness without the roughness.

Score: 8.0/10

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