We reviewed the core offering from Writers’ Tears back in 2016 when it finally came ashore from Ireland courtesy of Walsh Whiskey (which also produces The Irishman line). The Writers Tears expressions include several unique finished whiskeys, as well as a rare cask strength offering, none of which we’ve been able to track down, unfortunately. But we did manage to secure a sample of Double Oak, the latest stateside release. It was reportedly inspired by the success of another Writers’ Tears whiskey finished in Deau Cognac casks. Those same ex-Cognac barrels are used in Double Oak to additionally age the core blend of ex-bourbon cask single malt and pure pot still. Let’s taste!
The nose is bigger and richer than the standard offering. Notes of raw honey and lemon-accented black tea, prevalent in the standard offering, are still discernible, but the Cognac cask has clearly added more depth and intensity to the aroma in the form of golden raisins, a bit of old leather, vanilla bean, and sawn lumber. The palate is honeyed and mouth-coating with notes of lemon peel, dark berry jam, sweet biscuits, cocoa powder, and baking spice. The bit of ginger and licorice in the original is complemented nicely by the darker, winey notes of the Cognac cask which, both a little sour and tannic, also helps to temper the sweetness. The finish is long with tobacco and honey-dipped orchard fruits. Just as dangerously drinkable as the original, if not more so.
Aka Writer’s Tears.