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Prepare For The Mother of All Storms…

Pelican “Mother of All Storms” Barley Wine Cask Finish 

Expect high winds and crashing waves when The Mother of All Storms finally hits Irish shores. 

Pelican “Mother of All Storms” Barley Wine Cask Finish is the second release in Clonakilty Distillery’s collaboration series. Perhaps it was the resemblance in our respective Pacific and Atlantic Ocean locations that helped this partnership blend so well.

Available From Friday November 16th 

We sat down with Paul Corbett, Head Distiller at Clonakilty Distillery to learn more about this collaboration.

Q. Tell us a bit about the Pelican Brewing Company?

A. The Pelican Brewing Company are based in Pacific City, Oregon. Like ourselves they are located on the coast but it’s a different ocean….they’re on the Pacific, we’re on the Atlantic. They are a small brewery with big ambitions to create something unique and sensory.

Q. What beer was used in this particular collaboration?

A. Pelican’s “Mother of All Storms” Barely Wine which is a really big beer, usually 10 to 14 percent alcohol content. For me it’s a real showcase of malt or the flavours that you can get from malt. To get the ABV that high the brewer has to pack as much barely as possible for the yeast to ferment it all down, resulting in such a high point of alcohol. Because of this you should be getting lots of flavours from the malt like biscuit, bread, nut and just a little bit of spice. 

Q. What led you to believe this beer would work well with Clonakilty whiskey? 

A. Well I thought we’d try and get more of that biscuit breadiness, to compliment all the grain that’s already in the whiskey. These beers are brewed so big and there’s so much sugar going into the fermenter, that the yeast acts differently and produces more fruity esters. This means there should also be dark fruit notes along with those biscuity, bready, nutty flavours…….what I would describe as a Christmas cake or pudding. I thought that this would be really interesting to add to the whiskey. 

Q. Why did you choose to bottle at 46% ABV? 

A. So this the first time we’ve bottled at 46%. When I’m going to blend a whiskey I don’t have any ABV in mind, I take it out at cask strength, do a series of dilutions and pick whichever I fell has the best ratio of flavours. 

At 46% I thought this particular whiskey best emphasized the Christmas cake & spicy fruit notes I was looking for, along with the bready malt. 

Q. How long was the whiskey in the cask for?

A. With these barrels, it was just over three and half months. It didn’t need a huge amount of time in the barely wine as it’s really flavourful. At the end of the day I want these flavours to compliment but not overpower the whiskey……it’s really important to know the difference. 

Q. What should people expect from this whiskey?

A. So straight away I get some clove, cut straw, nutmeg and warm spices on the nose. I also get that nuttiness coming through in the taste, it’s very creamy with a slight leather from the malt…… to be honest it really just reminds me of Christmas cake or pudding. 

The finish has dried peels, fruits, spiciness from the oak and an almost vanilla creaminess from the wood. 

Paul Corbett, Head Distiller (L) & Ewan Paterson, Tours Supervisor (R)

About the Whiskey
On Sale:
In store & available online Friday October 16th 
Price: €85.00
Limited Release: 1,500 bottles in total, only 378 bottles kept for Ireland.
Best Enjoyed: With winds in excess of 60mph.

Tasting Notes
Nose: Warm spice, cut straw, clove, nutmeg, ground almond, vanilla
Palette: Almond, barley, raisins, sultanas and leather
Finish: Dried peels, mixed spice, straw and vanilla

Available from the Distillery Shop in Clonakilty & Online Store 

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Website: www.clonakiltydistillery.ie


In line with the current Government advice, we have, regretfully made the decision to temporarily close our Visitor Centre and Shop.

We plan to re-open in early December, should conditions permit.

We’re still here, beavering away behind the scenes, distilling more of our award-winning New-Make Spirit and Minke Gin, as well as producing our Clonakilty Distillery hand sanitiser.


You can order your favourite Clonakilty whiskeys, Minke gin and gifts -with FREE SHIPPING to Ireland and the UK.

We’ll be adding some exciting gift options to our online store very soon – perfect for that socially distanced shopping spree!

Until we see you all again, stay safe. Hopefully, in a few months, we’ll get to welcome you all back to Clonakilty Distillery.

Is fada an bóthar nach mbíonn casadh ann.

Cognac Cask Finish with Irish Malts

Here at Clonakilty Distillery we are always looking to innovate on small batches of premium sensory whiskeys. This is why we were delighted when Irish Malts reached out once again to partner for an exclusive release — a Single Cask Cognac Finished Whiskey, bottled at Cask Strength.

As always we turned to our Head Distiller, Paul Corbett to give us an insight into this exciting new collaboration.

Q: Why did you decide to make this whiskey?

Paul: Irish Malts approached us to do a cask strength whiskey for them. Personally I think our cognac finish whiskey we have for our shop exclusive, is really impressive so I was happy to try and make a more intense ramped up version of a single cask strength for Irish Malts.

Q: How does having the whiskey matured at a maritime climate make a difference to the whiskey?

Paul: With our warehouse it has it’s own micro-climate out there, it’s very humid which means it’s got a very even slow maturation. So when the casks are breathing in and out it’s not rapid, it’s even-paced and also out there, there’s a real ocean wind blowing the whole time. Sometimes it can even be difficult to stand out there, you can even feel the salt on your face in the wind, which permeates through our warehouse.
We have a lot of ventilation in the warehouse to leave that sea air in, which lands on the casks. The casks are permeable so it soaks into the casks and gives the whiskey a slight ocean salinity taste.

Q: Does that make the whiskey saltier?

Paul: Very slightly, the influence will be greater over time, these casks were filled two years ago so the influence is there but it’s muted.

Q: How old are the barrels the whiskey is in?

Paul: The casks are 22 months old, but the whiskey is a 2010 grain and 2008 malt. It’s a non-age statement whiskey.
It is a 60% malt, which would be a high percentage of really good malt that we use. We decided to blend it because the 2010 grain we have is really nice and I think grain whiskey does leave the finish of a cognac shine through more, so it helps bring out the cognac flavours in the cask.

Q: Why wait until now to bottle the whiskey, why not wait longer?

Paul: When doing finishes I want the cognac to be the icing on the cake, I don’t want the cognac flavour to be overpowering I want the flavour to compliment the whiskey.
I personally think there is such a thing as over finishing a whiskey. I feel right at this moment now there is a perfect blend of cognac flavour to bring out the subtleties of the whiskey.

This cognac cask has a special place in my heart as it is the very first blend we did in our Atlantic Ocean warehouse. This cask would have been filled on the very first day of our warehouse being opened, so it has great memories of a very special day.

About the Whiskey

On Sale: www.irishMalts.com
Price: €89.00

Limited Release: 265 bottles in total.

Tasting notes:
 Hot Chocolate, Nutella, coconut, and rich leather scent.
Palette: Chocolate, cherries, dried fruits, honey, leather.
Finish: Long and intense, leather, dried dark fruits, oak spice, chewy toffee, and caramel.

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This post originally appeared on Medium on 24/09/2020

Two Family Farms Separated by 3,000 Miles….

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Clonakilty Distillery Manor Hill “Baltic Porter” Cask Finish

Clonakilty Distillery have joined forces with a number of US breweries to create a range of bespoke limited-edition cask finished whiskeys for the American market.

We have chosen our partners carefully, selecting the casks of their premium beers to finish our whiskey, and the results are taste bud popping.

This series hits America’s shores from the end of September, but there is also good news for Irish fans. A small number of bottles have been held back in reserve for sale at our distillery shop in Clonakilty, and online store.

Manor Hill “Baltic Porter” Cask Finish is the first to be released in the series. This collaboration brings together two-family farms separated by 3,000 miles.

Available In store & online Friday September 25th

We interviewed Paul Corbett, Head Distiller at Clonakilty Distillery to learn more about this quirky collaboration.

Q. Tell us a bit about Manor Hill Brewery?

A. Manor Hill are a family brewery based in Ellicott City, Maryland who are working the land to make a range of farmhouse beers. It’s a nice collaboration for us at Clonakilty distillery as we are also a family business with farming roots.

Q. How does a collab like this work?

A. Basically the brewer seasons barrels with their beer, which we then use to finish our whiskey which absorbs the flavours from the beer and wood.

Q. What beer was used in this particular collaboration?

A. Manor Hill’s “Baltic Porter”, which is essentially a strong porter, with an alcohol content of around 8% or higher. They use lots of specialty roasted malts, like munich, crystal and chocolate malt, which should give rich chocolaty notes and a lot of dark fruits. These of course compliment whiskey really well…..I know stout and whiskey is my particular favourite tipple.

Q. How long was the whiskey in the cask for?

A. These casks were filled for just over 6 months. Once I felt the whiskey was ready we bottled it at 48.5%. I find with stout & porter cask finishes you don’t want to take the ABV down too low because you can start to lose those roasted rich chocolate flavours.

Q. What should people expect from this whiskey?

A. Well straight away I get chocolate coming through on the nose which is exactly what I was hoping for. I also think there’s a very slight hop, because the “Baltic Porter” has such a high ABV, giving a slight fruitiness.

The taste has tones of dark chocolate and dark stone fruit……it really coats the mouth. There’s quite a long flavour, oak spice and leather from the malt start to come through in the finish with lingering chocolate notes.

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Paul Corbett, Head Distiller and Ewan Paterson, Tours Supervisor

About the Whiskey
On Sale:
 In store & available online Friday September 25th.
Price: €85.00
Limited Release: 1,220 bottles in total, only 320 bottles kept for Ireland.
Best Enjoyed: On a Winter’s evening in front of the fire.

Tasting Notes
Nose: Cocoa, peach cobbler and rich bitter spices.
Palate: Dark chocolate, stone fruit and liquorice with a silky mouth coating.
Finish: Leather and oak spices linger with bitter chocolate for a long finish.

Clonakilty Distillery Manor Hill “Baltic Porter” Cask Finish

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Website: www.clonakiltydistillery.ie

This article first appeared on Medium on 17/09/2020

Join us for an exclusive tasting

Our collaborations with US breweries

Don’t tell anyone, but you can now join us at Clonakilty Distillery for an exclusive tasting of our very special limited release whiskeys, the offspring of our collaborations with a number of US breweries.

Try our infamous Stout Trooper (which snatched Double Gold at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition 2020) or perhaps if lockdown has left you parched, our mouthwatering Revival You Thirsty? IPA (you’ve got to admit, it’s a great name). You can’t buy these online or in stores anywhere in Europe, so we promise it will be worth the trip.

As an added bonus, you will be able to pre-order one of these rare delights at the end of your tour — but hurry and join us because bottles are very limited* and we expect them to fly out the door faster than a stormtrooper acting on Darth Vader’s orders.

Clonakilty Distillery reopened on July 1st, so book your Tour & Exclusive Whiskey Tasting now > https://shop.clonakiltydistillery.ie

Thought You Might Also Enjoy This:
Fast forward to 31 minutes to hear about Stout Trooper >

Hope to see you soon!

Your Tour Team
Clonakilty Distillery

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*You know the score, first come, first served.

This article first appeared on Medium on 06/07/2020