Bushmills Distillery exclusive Acacia Wood 2008
This distillery-only 10 year old single malt was first matured in in charred bourbon barrels and toasted sherry casks before being finished for over a year in Acacia wood barrels sourced from France. Bottled at 47% ABV, non-chill filtered and limited to 12,000 bottles in the first release. £74.00.
Omar Fitzell Notes
Bushmills right off the bat. Some stone fruit such as peach in there. Floral notes seem to come and go with a mild touch of mint too. Sherry cask influence is evident with some spice like cinnamon and a hint of raisins.
Slow lingering legs on my copita are a great indication of how oily this is. I could swirl this all night. Nice mellow sweetness to this. Touch of honey and white sugar. Nice share of vanilla that you’d expect from a malt.
Christmas cake. Raisins. Orange zest. Milk Chocolate, maybe white chocolate even but the sweetness is not overbearing.
Why aren’t Bushmills doing great things like this? They have the potential to be a massive contender in the market but seem to plod along with a few decent bottlings when they could explode interest every now and again with releases like this. Would love to try the base liquid before the Acacia finish as a comparison, but I really like this whiskey. On addition of water the Sherry influence was dialled up a couple of points, not a bad thing for me and I think the 47% was a good call. It gives you plenty lee way to play with this drop and balance it to your liking. And it’s a dram I’d love to sit at home and practice balancing over and over again!
Al Higgins notes
Wow, that’s quite unusual. The woodiness is spicy, floral and honeyed with a (not unpleasant) touch of cured meats.
Floral and multi-faceted. There are some light tropical fruit notes which are followed by some almost aggressive spice flavours.
Just a tad astringent with some wood tannins and bitterness creeping in.
I am not sure what to make of this. It’s a noble experiment but I think the Acacia wood has obliterated any distillery character. Fair play to Bushmills though, it would be good to see more innovation like this from them in the future.
Omar has been lurking in the background of the Irish Whiskey Industry since 2010 when he started his journey through tasting, enjoying and collecting whiskey. In January 2018 he launched the online blog “That’s Dram Good” which, in those few short months, has become one of the most popular whiskey blogs in Ireland.
You can find him on:
• Twitter – @thatsdramgood
• Facebook – ThatsDramGood
Over 20 years of experience in drinks retail and a member of the team at the Celtic Whiskey Shop since 2003. Alastair is chief tester and taster at the shop and is also coordinator for the Irish Whiskey Awards. When he is not working he is either training for ultra-marathons, parenting or drumming with his band Le Galaxie.
You can find him on:
• Twitter – @mostlydrinking