The origins of the Redbreast brand are little obscured; W. & A. Gilbey introduced it in the late 1930s and the story goes that the chairman of Gilbey was an avid birdwatcher and the brand name was entirely his idea.
The original whiskey was sourced from Jameson’s Bow Street Distillery. Gilbey ceased production of Redbreast in 1985 and soon sold the brand to Irish Distillers, who re-launched in in 1991. Currently the brand is owned by Pernod Ricard and is produced in Midleton Distillery. Redbreast 21 years old was introduced in 2013 and is the finest representation of the signature Redbreast sherry style, the oldest and richest permanent expression available. It was named the Second Finest Whiskey in the World in Jim Murray’s 2018 Whisky Bible.
Nose: very rich, raisins, dried dates and figs, pineapples, plum butter, quince jelly, caramel, roasted almonds, leather, tobacco and hints of furniture polish.
Palate: lots of dried fruit, prunes, apricots, figs, biter oranges, vanilla, honey, mixed nuts, nutmeg, candied ginger, dash of pepper, oak and touch of leather.
Finish: very long, with notes of dried fruit, roasted nuts, raisins and lingering spiciness.