Review: Keeper’s Heart Irish + Bourbon Cask Strength and Single Malt 10 Years Old

Review: Keeper’s Heart Irish + Bourbon Cask Strength and Single Malt 10 Years Old

Time to round out our Keeper’s Heart coverage with the final two offerings in their core portfolio. Last year, we had the chance to chat about the young Irish and American whiskey mashup brand with industry icon David Perkins, who serves as Liquid Collaborator and Advisor. Perkins had high praise in our interview for a limited edition age-stated single malt, which is finally on deck for review. In addition, we’re taking a look at a cask strength bottling of the distillery’s Irish + Bourbon expression that launched last summer. Thoughts follow.

Keeper’s Heart Irish + Bourbon Cask Strength – A blend of Irish grain and pot still whiskeys and MGP-sourced bourbon, bottled at cask strength. For the abv, the nose is surprisingly docile, perhaps due in part to its youth (reportedly just four years old for each whiskey). Straightforward notes of caramel sauce, vanilla fudge, and warm bread comprise the bulk of the aroma. It’s a little less interesting than the standard proof bottling which offered up glimmers of noteworthy orchard fruits. On the palate, things are frontloaded with a slug of caramelized sugar and sweet grain, the combination of young grain whiskey and bourbon showing all their cards early at cask strength. A healthy bit of pot still spice enlivens the midpalate before giving way to subtle notes of peach pie and dried basil. Peppery spice returns on the finish astride some toffee and barley sugar. Between the two higher octane Keeper’s Heart expressions, the Irish + American takes the prize. 118 proof. B+ / $50

Keeper’s Heart Single Malt 10 Years Old – Sourced from Ireland’s Great Northern Distillery and finished in Malaga wine casks for an undisclosed amount of time. This is another animal entirely with no real American influence, from what I can gather. The nose is bright and delicate with notes of sponge cake and buttercream. As it opens, soft notes of almond cookies and peach scones arrive. It’s surprisingly light on its feet for a 10-year-old single malt, especially one with secondary finishing. The palate is just as subtle and silky with honeyed malts and whisper quiet undertones of dried cherry and rose hips. The finish is warm and waxy with notes of honeycomb, fresh oak, and amaretti cookies. A restrained but elegant Irish single malt that rewards careful attention. 86 proof. A- / $100 [BUY IT NOW FROM RESERVEBAR]

Keeper’s Heart Single Malt 10 Years Old




Drew Beard is assistant editor for Drinkhacker and winner of several booze-related merit badges, including Certified Specialist in Spirits and Executive Bourbon Steward. A former federal employee turned hotelier and spirits journalist, he looks forward to his next midlife crisis.

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