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Irish Whiskey Magazine - Tastings - Knappogue Castle 14 Year Old

Knappogue Castle 14 Year Old

This Castle Brands release was named as the Irish Whiskey of the Year at the 2016 Irish Whiskey Awards. This is a 14 year old Single Malt we assume to be from Bushmills stock. The ‘twin wood refers to the use of ex-Bourbon and Oloroso Sherry casks. Non-chill filtered and bottled at 46% ABV and RRP of

Greg Dillon Notes


Feisty on the nose, initially quite raw although after a few seconds there are soft undertones with elements of stewed dark fruit notes combining with vanilla oak notes to create something pretty impressive.


Sweet with white pepper spice, notes of pineapple chunks alongside lovely, juicy dark fruits fill your mouth, a very nice flavour profile, all of which comes at you almost in very defined and deliberate waves.


Lingering, a nice peppery spice to it that tails off slowly and thoughtfully.



I would have thought the sherry cask influence here would have either  dominated, or not turned up, but I must say I’m impressed with how the two wood types used in maturation have worked together in tandem to give a full flavour experience.





Stuart Irvine Notes


A fresh fruit basket with light buttered biscuit and classic cut grass. The fruit is mostly apple with light orange while the sherry influence comes across with fresh red fruit in the guise of raspberry and strawberry. The sherry maturation has been restrained as there is no serious sign of any deep and dark dried fruit. Slight hints of creamy oak spice show off the bourbon influence and the spice is quite prickly as it lurks just under the fruit flavours. A little water brings out a sense of age from the depths of this dram.


Initially juicy and rich with malt. Develops into the fruit flavours with a hint of stewed orange before moving into the red berries which are no slightly heavier and darker in nature. A little spice runs throughout as you move back into dry oak wood. As with the nose, a little water shows an older side to this whiskey.


Medium / Short with dry red apple right at the end.


Overall a good quality Irish single malt. Solid, distinct flavours from the spirit have been carefully managed through maturation. Classic North coast flavours and respectful, but not “over the top”, sherry maturation have made this a very tasty “go to” dram. For me the pricing is just about spot on and this is a whiskey that’s well worth looking in to.


Irish Whiskey Magazine - Tastings - Greg Dillon

Greg Dillon

Greg is a brand consultant in the whiskey industry helping to create, build and fix brands. He also authors the award-winning greatdrams.com website, he also has a book on whiskey coming out in the Autumn.

You can find him on:
• Twitter – @GreatDrams
• Facebook – GreatDrams
• Instagram – @GreatDramsGreg

Irish-Whiskey-Magazine-Stuart Irvine

Stuart Irvine

Stuart Irvine is a whiskey blogger based in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Since first getting into whiskey around 5 years ago Stuart has amassed an incredible knowledge of all whiskeys and he has since started up his own highly  respected blog “Whisky Belfast”, is active on twitter as @Whisky_Belfast and contributes regularly on Facebook. Stuart regularly attends whiskey events both in his native Belfast, and further afield.

Irish Whiskey Magazine

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