Midleton Very Rare 2021 unveiled

19 February, 2021

Kevin O’Gorman has unveiled his first Midleton Very Rare expression since taking over as master distiller at Irish Distillers.

The outgoing Brian Nation created Midleton Very Rare 2020 during his final days in the role last year.

This renowned and highly collectible whiskey is normally released in the autumn each year, but the 2021 release was pushed forward to February to honour a rare changing of the guard at Irish Distillers, which also produces Jameson and Redbreast.

Midleton Very Rare is designed to represent the pinnacle of Irish whiskey. It features a blend of fine and rare single pot still and single grain whiskeys from the Midleton inventory.

The 2021 release is the 38th edition in the range. O’Gorman spent several months exploring the finest casks at his disposal as he sought to put his own stamp on the range.

Midleton Very Rare 2021 features whiskey aged between 15 and 36 years and matured in lightly charred ex-bourbon American oak barrels.  

O’Gorman selected a perfect mix of first fill and second fill casks to enhance the wood contribution, while allowing the pot still component to express itself in a bid to achieve a luxurious, balanced aroma and taste profile.

“It is a great honour to become the custodian of this extraordinary Irish whiskey family and to have my signature adorn our 2021 vintage,” said O’Gorman. “The journey to launching this vintage began almost 40 years ago. Continuing the work of my predecessors was both a daunting and extremely enjoyable process that allowed me to explore some of our rarest casks and create an exceptional blend that sits seamlessly within the family.

“I am particularly proud to have been able to include distillate that was laid down in 1984, the year the collection was first conceived by Master Distiller Emeritus Barry Crockett, from who I have learned so much. 

“For me, this vintage adds a new dimension and elegance to the style and quality for which the range is renowned. I couldn’t ask for a better way to begin my chapter as Irish Distillers’ master distiller.”

Midleton Very Rare 2021 is bottled at 40% abv. It is available online and in Ireland now, and will hit shelves in the UK, USA, global travel retail, Australia, Germany, France and Canada in the coming months, with an rrp of €180.

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