Published: 11th April 2024

Introducing Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Five

Midleton Very Rare, renowned as the pinnacle of Irish Whiskey, proudly unveils the fifth chapter in its Silent Distillery Collection.

The 49-year-old limited edition expression is the penultimate opportunity for whiskey lovers to experience the Silent Distillery collection crafted from the old Midleton Distillery.

Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Five is an extraordinary single pot still whiskey crafted with some of the last remaining drops of the inimitable liquid from the Old Midleton Distillery, which was decommissioned after operating from 1825 to 1975.

Representing the epitome of craftsmanship and heritage, the 49-year-old masterpiece is Midleton’s oldest whiskey to date, inviting whiskey enthusiasts to savour a taste of outstanding history and opulent luxury. Master Distiller Max Crockett originally distilled the liquid in 1973 utilising the world’s largest pot still, often hailed as the 7th wonder of the whiskey world. This exceptional liquid was then left to rest and has been under the careful guardianship of all three of the brand’s subsequent Master Distillers.

Aged in a historic American ex-bourbon barrel, this exceptionally rare liquid opens with delicate hints of fruit, unveiling layers of peach, apricot, and dates with nuances of sugar-glazed almonds and antique wood. Next, a vibrant medley of stone and citrus fruits bursts forth, enrobing the senses in a silk-like texture. Slowly, the oak’s tannins emerge, imparting notes of herbal tea and dark chocolate, harmoniously balanced by the spices of anise and ginger. With each passing moment, the sweetness of salted caramel and toffee apple come to the fore, culminating in a finish that resonates with decades of ageing, where the pot still spices and fruits reign supreme as the oak recedes into the background. Once this liquid is gone, it will be gone forever, making this a true collector’s item.

Handblown and etched by the skilled artisans of Waterford Crystal, each decanter is a work of art, meticulously finished and polished by hand. Housed in an accompanying handcrafted tiger brown oak burr cabinet created by Irish designer John Galvin, the cabinet is inlayed with antique white leather, reclaimed 200-year-old whiskey vat oak and silver detailing.
Describing the liquid, Master Distiller Kevin O’Gorman shares: “Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Five embodies a captivating tale that celebrates the convergence of the finest wood, exceptional whiskey, and indomitable spirit of the master craftsmen who sit at the heart of the Old Midleton Distillery’s legacy. The result is truly remarkable, offering an exceptional liquid that exceeds expectations and promises an unforgettable experience. I eagerly invite whiskey enthusiasts to indulge in this exceptional liquid and discover the captivating history that accompanies the expression as they savour every sip.”

Expanding upon the rich heritage and generations of craftsmanship captured within Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Five, the barrels chosen by Kevin O’Gorman were married for a final 6 months in cask number 52969. This American ex-bourbon barrel was repaired by Dominic Buckley in the mid-1970s and, as is customary for coopers, he marked it with the Buckley family’s signature “1” stamp as a mark of quality and to ensure its traceability. Buckley’s barrel, which endured over 50 years without a single leak, was later inspected and maintained by his son Ger Buckley, the current Master Cooper at Midleton Distillery. Illustrating the meticulous attention to detail and expertise passed down through generations, the Buckley family commitment to coopering adds an unparalleled sense of legacy to the expression and epitomises the essence of excellence that defines the Midleton Very Rare brand.

Master Cooper Ger Buckley says: “I am extremely excited to see the culmination of our family’s heritage and craftsmanship captured within Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Five. As a fifth-generation cooper, inspired and trained by my father and my uncle Donal, it is with immense pride that I see our legacy commemorated in this remarkable whiskey. The marrying cask, marked and repaired by my father Dominic Buckley and subsequently inspected by myself, bears his distinct ‘1’ mark—a symbol of the dedication and meticulous artistry embodied and passed down through my family.”

Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Five is bottled at 52.4% ABV and is available to purchase in Ireland, Northern Ireland, USA, France, UK, Germany, The Netherlands, Czech Republic, Belgium, Austria, Australia, China, Hong Kong, Persian Gulf, Singapore, Global Travel Retail and Irish Distillers’ Brand Homes.

Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Collection Chapter Five tasting notes

Delicate hints of fruit at first, with peach, apricot, and dates to the fore. Notes of sugar glazed almonds, worn leather and antique wood add to the complexity. Indulgent sweet tones of treacle toffee, vanilla essence, and heather honey work in harmony with the earthy woodland aromas and light dustings of white pepper which quietly linger in the background.

Opens with a vibrant medley of stone and citrus fruits, enhanced by the pot still whiskey’s luscious and silk-coating texture. The oak’s tannins slowly build, adding notes of herbal tea and dark chocolate, while the spices of anise and ginger perfectly complement the sweet undertones of salted caramel and toffee apple.

A lingering finish in which decades of ageing has developed intense and rich flavours, leaving the pot still spices and fruits to have the final say as the oak slowly fades.

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