Jameson 18 Years Old Master Selection
The Jameson 18 Years Old Master Selection was introduced in 2002, and has since been replaced by another Jameson of a similar age, which is called the Limited Reserve. I honestly don’t know if that also means they’ve changed the recipe for it.
After maturing for 18 years in oloroso sherry casks, the whisky for this Jameson then received a finish in first-fill bourbon barrels, interestingly enough. Usually it is the other way around. The bourbon finish is supposed to impart subtle notes of vanilla, as well as having a mellowing influence on the whole.
Jameson 18 Years Old Master Selection (40%, OB, B#65916)
Nose: Notes of furniture polish and varnish at first, accompanied by a fair amount of oak. There’s a faint layer of fruit behind all that, with soft oranges and nectarines, but there’s a bit of spearmint and honey too. Finally a whisper of cappuccino.
Taste: Fruitier than I expected. Proper notes of pink grapefruit and vibrant mandarines, followed by a sweeter flavour of caramel. A touch of resin too, as well as some malted grains and a whiff of cough syrup.
Finish: Soft fruits and lingering honey.
Good stuff, even at just 40 percent alcohol by volume. The influence of the single pot still style is also recognizable, making this an attractive whisky, with plenty of complexity.
Thijs is a spirits writer and accredited liquorist from The Netherlands. He runs the blog Words of Whisky and contributes to a number of Dutch and international publications.