30th May sees the launch of Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Two, the second release in Ireland’s oldest ever whiskey collection.
The Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection is a collection of six releases. There will be one release annually from 2020 until 2025, ranging in age from 45 to 50 years old, all from the Old Midleton Distillery which operated from 1825-1975.
Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter One launched in 2020. Chapter Two is a 46 year-old single pot still Irish whiskey distilled in 1973 in the style of Old Midleton. Just 70 bottles of this rare Irish whiskey will be produced and they are expected to retail for €40,000 each.
Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Two has been decanted into handblown and etched crystal decanter bottles, produced by Waterford Crystal, with each of the bottles individually numbered 1-70. The bottle comes displayed in a bespoke wooden cabinet handcrafted by Irish designer, John Galvin, using wood up to 200 years old from reclaimed oak whiskey vats in addition to ancient Elm and rare Japanese Tamo.
Created and matured under the guardianship of four Master Distillers, the whiskey has been enhanced through each changing of hands.
While Old Midleton Distillery was famous for its single pot still Irish whiskey, by the time the spirit for Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Two was laid down in the early 1970s, single pot still Irish whiskey had almost disappeared as a category.
Distilled in the world’s largest copper pot still, Chapter Two was initially filled into a selection of sherry and bourbon casks and left undisturbed for over 20 years. The whiskey was then married and recasked into refill bourbon casks under the guardianship of Barry Crockett, Master Distiller and son of Max. Years passed and the whiskey was later recasked into newly arrived port pipes and once again laid down.
For the concluding part of the journey, the whiskey finally rested in a refill Bourbon cask.
Kevin O’Gorman is only the fourth person in 75 years to hold the title of Master Distiller at Midleton Distillery. Commenting, O’Gorman explained: “Like the distillate itself, the maturation journey of this whiskey is both complex and rare. The craft of recasking requires incredible attention to detail and constant sensory assessment. When managed successfully it can produce an exquisite whiskey of great complexity. The benefits of the recasking process are evident in the remarkable vibrancy of this ultra-aged Irish whiskey.
“As Master of Maturation it was a joy to oversee the aging process of this expression in recent years. This year as Master Distiller, and with the whiskey at peak perfection, I had the pleasure of overseeing its bottling as Chapter Two in the Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection.”