Jameson Whiskey Makers Series – Coopers Croze

To best appreciate Jamieson’s Cooper’s Croze one must pair it with the story of how this light amber spirit journeys from still to bottle. Jameson has released a special trio of spirits inspired by those in the distillery who are masters of their craft (distiller, blender and cooper).

Cooper’s Croze was created under the direction of the distillery’s 5th generation master cooper. It celebrates the influence the choice of casks has on the final spirit we all happily enjoy. This can be seen by the naturally light colour that lets the barrels speak for themselves. Before making it to the bottle this sprit has a long journey through several barrels as it ages for 15 years. It starts n virgin American oak moving to second fill bourbon until finishing in Sherry barrels. The sprint’s journey is elected in is taste, as it starts robust and full up front and mellows as it makes its way past your chest.

It is light on the nose and imparts flavours of toasted wood, dried fruit and subtle sweetness.

At $100 this is not an Irish whiskey to be drowned in coke. It drinks smoothly all on its own and would be a fine addition to anyone who is looking for a more refined bottle of Irish whiskey.

Jameson Whiskey Makers Series – Distillers Safe

This was one of the samples we had on our guided tasting with Jamison’s Irish Whiskey. It was by far the youngest and lightest in colour compared to everything else we had this evening. Distillers safe is a tribute to Jamison’s head distiller Brian Nation, and the tool of his craft, which is a spirit safe. You can find out what a spirit safe is here. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spirit_safe

When you taste whiskey that has matured in casks, it really is something. You have the flavour of an alternate liquid (usually sherry or bourbon) that seasoned the barrel. The barrel itself is either European or American oak, and than it is toasted to varying levels. All of these combine to overwhelm the senses when that bottle is uncorked and pored into a glass. The aroma, the mouth feel, the smoothness and flavour all work in harmony and balance. All of this was pre conceived years, if not decades before coming to this single moment of fruition. Distillers safe had some of these characteristics, an amazing feat considering it is only 4 years old, and just incase your wondering, it takes 3 years to officially become whiskey.

The nose on this was fruity and sweet. I could detect grapefruit, among the fruits, and should be noted was extremely light in colour. The palate was light, silky, zesty, and finished quickly. Of all the tasters Jameson’s brought with them, this one was my least favourite. I found this to be to light in every aspect. Light on the nose, light on the taste, and light on the finish. Nothing surprised me during this experience, It tasted exactly how it smelled, and finished with a quiet whisper.

To me, good whiskey needs a balance that I did not find here. I do recommend trying this one as I find it interesting that being only 4 years old to have the characteristics it did. I’m sure much if not all of those came from the ingredients that Brian decided to distil. Jameson’s line of whiskeys pair well with pickles or anything salty, as would be the case with this. I would also make my own recommendation and pair this with a zesty shrimp salad, arugula, green onion, garlic, lime, cilantro, and kimchi, would balance the sweet and the salty to pair nicely.

Although this was not my favourite, it is by far not the worst I have ever tried. Brian should be commended for making something so unique out of something so young. His skill as a distiller shines in this bottle. I will skip this one for my personal collection, but if you ever have a chance to try this, don’t pass this one up.

Jameson Whiskey Makers Series – The Blenders Dog

Crafted by Master Billy Leighton, this whiskey is named for a tool of the trade, a small metal tube used to check levels and collect samples straight from the cask, the Blenders Dog is never far from its masters side.

Billy is the Head Blender at Jameson so the pressure is on him to ensure all of the Jameson family blends being made are of the highest quality, his whiskey is his art, like a conductor orchestrating a melodic symphony.

This particular blend from the Jameson Masters Series is aged 5-7 years, mellow with a creamy butterscotch flavour followed by notes of kiwi fruit. This Whiskey has a great balance of fruit and sweet flavours, perfect for a mid-day snack!

Available at the LCBO (Product # 476697) and priced at $99.95 you may get a bit of sticker shock if you’re used to only shelling out $40 for the original Jameson but…. these special editions have been made with a unique story to share and incredible detail right down to the fingerprint of Billy Leighton on the front label.

In my opinion this bottle at its current price point may not appeal to a wide audience, but don’t let price scare you off as you will certainly be getting a high quality Irish Whiskey crafted by a true master in the whiskey making world.

Purchasing this bottle should be a no brainier for collectors and fans of the Jameson brand, it would also make great gift with the bottles appealing presentation and unique distinction as a Special Edition series.