In a nutshell: A rich fruity and intense blended Irish Whiskey matured mostly in sherry casks
The lowdown: This rich dark blend from Ireland's oldest working distillery is composed mainly of single malts aged for around eight to ten years in Oloroso sherry casks with a small proportion of delicate and sweet single grain whiskey. It has rich, fruity notes and a deep intense character balanced by a pleasing smoothness. Best enjoyed neat over ice, but it also makes a good mixer when a whiskey with a dark fruit sweetness is called for.
Bushmills is home to the world's oldest licensed whiskey distillery. Official records stretch back to 1608 when the area was granted its license to distil. Over 400 years later, whiskey is still being made in Bushmills, thanks to experience and craft passed down from generation to generation. Bushmills is more than just a whiskey. It's a village where family, friends and neighbours work side by side at the distillery.
In the 1850s, the Crown imposed a tax on those distilling in Ireland through a tax on barley. Even then, malted barley was known throughout the world to make the finest whiskey, known as "pure malt" whiskey. When only malted barley is used in distillation and made at a single distillery, you have the very definition of "single malt" whiskey. That tax, however, forever changed Irish whiskey, as almost every Irish whiskey distillery began substituting corn or other inferior grains for barley.
To this day, Bushmills continues to distil single malt whiskey at the world's oldest licensed whiskey distillery.