West Cork Original & West Cork 10 Single Malt

So in case you missed the first post, I’m still in Newfoundland. Well, not really. I’m back and writing reviews in Ontario, but I was in Newfoundland at the time of writing this.

And I’m still at the Underbelly. And I’m still enjoying all the whiskey I can afford.

So I’ve reviewed most, if not all, of the ample selection of Scotch. What’s a whisky snob reviewer to do? Well go to Irish Whiskey, Duh!

But I wanted to make it special. Really I wanted to review two from the same distillery. If you count that as special, we’re on the same wavelength. If you think it’s so I type less, we’re also on the same wave length.

West Cork Distillers is based in West Cork.

Well, that should be enough for the day, goodnight folks!


The distillery is based in Skibbereen, which is in West Cork. It started as two distillers, and has since become one and a global business.

Today I’ll be reviewing two of their West Cork range. That said, they also make the Pogues whiskey, which would have been added on, but was drank by ruffians with amazing musical tastes and all the cool drugs I hear the kids are doing.

So, let’s get to them, shall we?

West cork o.jpeg

Up first we have West Cork Original. This whiskey is closer to a traditional Irish whiskey, made up of grain and malt whiskies and aged in ex-bourbon casks.

Given they don’t point it out anywhere, I’m going to say the casks aren’t first-fill on this one.

Also I think I drank too quick and forgot to take a picture of this. Oh well, drinking is as drinking does, whatever the heck that means.

Price: $34.95

Region: Ireland

Abv: 40%

Colour: 5Y 9/6

Nose: Mango, bread, vanilla, pineapple, peaches n’cream

Wow. I’m actually impressed. This is quintessentially an Irish whiskey, however there’s more fruit to it.

Lots more fruit. Quite strong for a low abv. whiskey. Colour me impressed… well, buy me whiskey first, then you can colour me and find out I can come in any colour.

Taste: Peach, caramel, vanilla, oak, cinnamon, floral

Less fruit than the nose, and more oak influence. I’m happy it goes beyond fruity and bread, really. Some whiskies don’t really have a second note these days.

Granted I’ve been reviewing a lot of mid end, and I’m mean, so maybe that’s just me. Good cask influence here. Nothing out of sorts.

Finish: Cinnamon, nutmeg, orange, cookie, caramel, black pepper, honey heather

I think if this was stronger, it’d really be amazing. As it is, it’s quite quick with lots of different flavours. The one minute man of things in my mouth, if you will.

And you all thought that title went to my boyfriend. Jokes on you, I’m horrible at giving head.

Conclusion: All in all a nice low Abv whiskey. Does things differently than other Irish Whiskey, which I appreciate. Has some nice spice. Only reason it’s not higher is the low Abv. that dulls and quickens the flavours too much.


West Cork 10 2.jpg

Following that, I had to try West Cork 10 Single Malt. Because I’m contractually obliged to. Oh, wait, no I’m not, but what the heck, let’s make up rules now.

So key differences here is the last whiskey was a blend of grain and single malt. This one is purely single malt.

Second up, this one was aged only in first fill ex-bourbon casks.

That all said, for some reason it’s still a low Abv., but I’m assuming those high end casks cost a pretty penny.

None the less, sounds like it’s older (versus an NAS which I assume is 3 years old), only single malt, and has better casks. All things I like to hear. Let’s see how it tastes, shall we?

West Cork 10.jpg

Price: N/A at the LCBO

Region: Ireland

Abv: 40%

Colour: 5Y 9/6

Nose: Lemon, candy, smoke, nectarine, buttery, thyme

Nice mixture of flavours. Less fruit than before, though we’re getting some smoke and buttery themes.

As time goes on, the thyme takes over. Not that we’re wasting time or thyme. Just more thyme, is all.

Taste: Watermelon, floral, chillis, coconut flakes, wheat

Really light. Where as the last one had this stronger mouth feel and taste, this one tastes really light. Both were floral, however the dry flavour here isn’t winning me as a fan.

Granted based on my inability to suck dick, maybe people don’t want me as a fan anymore.

Finish: Black pepper, thyme, oak, bread, lime

Ends like a stereotypical Irish Whiskey with yeast, citrus, heat, and herbal notes. It’s not bad, just not interesting.

Conclusion: Oddly enough I prefer the blend this time. The Single Malt started out interesting, with some good mixture of flavours on the nose, however it’s just to weak to really show off anything. Either their single malt is weak and their grain is exceptional, or rather their Single Malt just doesn’t hold up to low Abv.

Oh well. I’m still interested in what else they have to offer, and all in all, you could do a lot worse than this dram on a warm summer’s day. I think I’d buy the Original over it every time though.


World Whiskey reviews #159-160, Ireland review #28-29, Whiskey Network review #743-44

One thought on “West Cork Original & West Cork 10 Single Malt

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