Kinsale on Mother's day
Today's plan is to go south to the resort town of Kinsale and have Paddy show us around the links of the Old Head Gold Course, followed by a lunch at the Vista restaurant and then a whiskey tasting. Kinsale is a lovely picturesque seaside tourist fishing village. Colourful buildings fill the harbour as well as numerous little pubs and shops, many of which close on a Sunday. (Who remembers stores being closed on a Sunday?)
Before the day starts I am blessed to receive the first of many Mother's Day wishes - love you guys too!
At 11 am we meet Paddy in Belgooly at the garage station and Follow him into Kinsale, down to the Old Head. This weeken, there are lots of vintage European cars in town. I trust someone got a good picture of some of them, I did not.
The Old head GC is just 20 years old and sits on the old head promontory and is subject to severe westerly winds. Lusitania sank 17 miles north of the lighthouse. The greens are watered daily not because they need moisture but to remove the salt water. The course is an 18 hole, par 72 Costing
€220 per round. They use primarily caddies and are just installing computers onto the golf carts to ensure/manage where the go.
All 15 rooms €329/night face the sea and are set into the side of the promontory - they almost a look like bunkers, pardon the pun. Most guests come for 2 nights. N#1 priority at the old head is Golf!
Visited the dining Room, the bar (the Lusitania) and the pro shop. This club is so highbrow that they have a landing pad for choppers. Not unlikely for a four some from Killarney to spend €1000 to fly down.
Old head emblem - The stone of accord - used instead of lawyers for a handshake. The clan who lived here were the De Courcey's. Course is only 20 years old - environmental friendly build. Fought with the locals to be built but now the golf course is the main employer for Kinsale.
If the course is fogged in all golfing stops and there is a No kids allowed policy.
Each room is named and the story is placed in the foyer of each room. Voya product lines in the bathrooms are environmentally friendly.
After lunch at the Vista Restaurant we go for Whiskey tasting with Connor Ryan, no relation, at his pub- the Folk House. He gives us whiskey lecture and we taste 4 Irish whiskeys. The highlights:
In the 1980's Irish whiskey was mandated to have the following :must be aged in wooden barrel min 3 years, must be aged in Ireland and then spirit needs to be min 40% abv. FYI-Only 2% of whiskey is evaporated in Irish whiskey barrels due to temperate climate. (vs. India 18% and U.S. 12%). Powers or Tullamore Dew (high pot still count) whiskies are the best for Irish coffee. Single malt - 100% single malted barley. Pot still - uses 50/50 malted and unmalted barley which gives the whiskey an oilier richer flavour - more character.
Single grain -
Greenore 8yr - Kilbeggan distillery. 90% non-GMO corn from France and 10 %malted barley. (provides sugar - means the barley has been soaked for at least 50 hrs). Anthracite smoked grain (no smoke) Continuous still. Aged in grade B1 bourbon barrels. Barrels used 3 times. Used sherry barrels as well. Barrels help to provide nuances. Light grain with honey and oak, a little banana. Silky smooth on palate.
Jameson Black Barrel
- called that so is double charred. Min 7 yrs blend of grain (continuous) and pot still. Bourbon (b1,2 and 3) and sherry (s1 and 2) cask aged. Good for a whiskey sour. Long finish nice spice. Always blend their whiskies.
Teeling single malt -
100% malted barley only from one distillery.
25 yr old and 12 yr old Whiskey blended together from a single distillery. Use sherry, port, Madeira and burgundy and cab sauv barrels. (Cold chill filtered helps to ensure no hazing takes place in products less then 43%) this product is not chill filtered and is 46% abv. Lots of 25 yr old components hence the fuller and spicier taste. Teeling makes a "poitin" or "new make" spirit whereby no oak is used - great for cocktails.
Redbreast 12 yr
New focus for Ireland. Triple distilled. First pot stilled product - super smooth. Sherry influenced (oloroso barrels) and B1and b2. Bottled at 40%abv. My personal favorite!!! Smooth , slightly sweet not the spice.
Growth is at about 20%per annum. Displacing scotch and rum - long drink category. I think the students enjoyed themselves too. As we leave the tasting the rain has begun.