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Here’s another of the new wave of exciting whiskeys which have come out of Ireland in the past few years. We’re particularly excited about this one as it hails from the County Antrim coast โ€“ the heartland of the ancient kingdom of Dรกl Riata, from which we take our name. It’s called the Sexton, and as well as tasting great, it comes in a unique and very stylish bottle.

Traditionally, Irish distillers aren’t as well known for producing single malt whiskey as their counterparts across the water in Scotland. There, the term has become synonymous with whisky of the highest quality, sought after by collectors the world over. Ireland, on the other hand, is better known for its blended whiskeys, and its own specialty, single pot still whiskey. But in more recent times, a few excellent Irish single malts have emerged, including this one: The Sexton.

While the Sexton name may be new and unfamiliar, the whiskey-making pedigree of the Antrim coast is world-renowned. A certain small town by the name of Bushmills is home to the world’s oldest whiskey distillery โ€“ perhaps you’ve heard of it. And while the makers of The Sexton never mention Bushmills specifically, one has to wonder if there might be some sort of connection there…

Unusually in the masculine world of whiskey, The Sexton is the creation of a woman โ€“ Master Blender Alex Thomas. She learned her craft under Bushmills Master Distiller Colum Egan, and after many years under his tutelage, The Sexton is her first creation of her own.

Her aim was to make a whiskey which retains the accessibility which Irish whiskey is renowned for, but which also is distinctive and interesting enough to be memorable โ€“ a drink which will please the novice and the connoisseur alike. And in so doing, to create a product of its time โ€“ something which represents the change and progress in Irish society in recent years.

We’d have to say she’s done just that. At a minimum of four years old it’s relatively young for a single malt, which makes for a lively flavour profile. But not at the expense of smoothness โ€“ this is Irish whiskey after all, so it’s triple distilled in copper pot stills.

It’s matured exclusively in casks made from French oak, which is dried for at least sixteen months, then toasted and seasoned with oloroso sherry for a minimum of two years. Once ready, they’re shipped to Ireland and filled with the spirit which, after a few years, will be blended to produce The Sexton Single Malt.

The result of all this effort is a remarkably sophisticated whiskey. Dried citrus and berries on the nose, complemented by grain, spice and just a hint of smoke on the palate. Sweet, smooth and lingering.

But enough about the whiskey โ€“ what about the bottle it comes in? Pretty, isn’t it? That unusual hexagonal shape is inspired by the world famous Giant’s Causeway, just up the road from where The Sexton is produced. Of course, one should never judge a book by it’s cover, but we’ve found that some customers buy it purely because they like the look of the bottle โ€“ and so far they’ve never been disappointed by the contents.

We’re pretty sure you won’t be either. It’s a great, distinctive Irish whiskey at any price, and outstanding value at this price. Give it a try.