My Connemara Collection

My collection of Connemara is in progress and always "under construction" J
To view the bottles in close-up just click the pictures!

On the 28th of august 2009 I set up a fan club for Connemara Peated Single Malt Irish Whiskey which I named "Connemara Clan". If you like Connemara as much as I do, please follow Connemara Clan here and here

Connemara Peated Single Malt Irish Whiskey

 
Pure Pot Still 
Is not an actual "Pure Pot Still" or "Single Pot Still" whiskey but as all Connemaras just traditional double distilled single malt. Almost all first bottlings and first editions from Cooley Distillery that was single malt was called pure pot still. What I believe they meant by this was that the spirit was distilled only in pot stills and not in continous or column stills. This is one of the first bottlings of Connemara to be released, distilled 1992 and released circa 1996. It has been matured in bourbon casks. Back-label in German. No number on back-label. A big thanks to Adrian a.k.a Irish Whiskey Chaser for fixing the very hard to find tube to this one!  


Pure Pot Still Cask Strength
This is one of the first bottlings of Connemara to be released (around 1996). Today this tall bottle is quite unusual. The cask strength of this particular bottling is 59,7% ABV. Matured in bourbon casks. No number on back-label and no laser number.


 
Pure Pot Still Cask Strength 75cl
This is an extremely rare version of the one above, in clear glass and 75cl! Probably released for the USA. Number on back label is L2208. A huge thanks to Adrian a.k.a Irish Whiskey Chaser for parting with this bottle! 58,9% ABV. 


Peated Single Malt dumpy bottle
NAS, Dumpy bottle. 40% ABV. Laser number on back-label is L5013


 
12 years old dumpy bottle
This is a bottle of the first 12 yo Connemara ever being released. Due to it's age and the fact that the first Connemara was distilled in 1992, the first 12 yo can not have been released earlier than 2004. Number on back label is L3143. Big thanks to Adrian a.k.a Irish Whiskey Chaser for letting go of this bottle!


Cask Strength dumpy bottle
Dumpy bottle. Back in the days when CS Connemara had a different strength from batch to batch! This one hold 58,9% ABV. Number on back-label is L3143


 
Pure Pot Still miniature
This is a really rare miniature Connemara. When it arrived some of the contents had unfortunately leaked, I tasted the remains but it was undrinkable due to oxidation… This is the only mini I have seen with a number on the back label, L7.325.


Connemara Family Pack- old version
Consisting of three Connemara miniatures. The NAS, 12yo and Cask strength and a Glencairn-glass. Released pre-2009.




Connemara Family Pack - new version
Just as above but the labels have the 2009 design!



Peated Single Malt
NAS, Pre 2009. A mix of 4, 6 and 8yo Connemara. Matured in first-fill bourbon barrels. Number on back-label is L6117


 
 Cask Strength
Pre 2009, 4-5yo Connemara from first fill bourbon barrels. This bottle is finally part of my collection thanks to a good friend who brought if back from Germany to me! This is from back in the days when CS Connemara had a different strength from batch to batch! 57,9% ABV. Back-label is L8121


12 years old
Pre 2009. Number on back-label is L8078. The 12yo dumpy bottle had no wooden tube but the 12 year olds with this design has!



 
Original
The new design launched in March 2014! The NAS is now called "Original". Also, note the Kilbeggan Distilling Co. label! 40% ABV. Laser number is L14040 16/04/14  




12 years old
The new design launched in March 2014! Also, note the 'Kilbeggan Distilling Co.' label! 40% ABV. Laser number is L14041 14/04/16

 
Distillers Edition
The Distillers Edition is back! Released in august 2014. The previous 2010 version was only for France, but this seems to be bottled for the world wide market! This version of Connemara DE is bottled at 43% ABV. The back of the tube is a bit unclear but it could be interpreted as if this whiskey is fully matured in Oloroso sherry casks… Laser number on bottle is L14074 23/0714.


22 years old

Released in early september 2014. Please take a look at my tasting note here for more info! Laser number is L14084 25/08/14.





Exclusive Bottling Connemara Sherry Single Cask
This Connemara has actually not been fully matured in a single sherry cask but rather consists of around two casks of 1st fill bourbon matured Connemara that has been transferred into and finished in an oloroso sherry cask for about 18 months. It's age in total is a little over 13 years old. This is the first ever sherry finished Connemara (Small Batch Sherry finish being the 2nd, cask 112 being the 3rd, and cask 155 being the 4th). No fully sherry matured Connemara has yet been released. 46% ABV Cask no. V07/0887, bottle no. 91. I also have bottle no. 95 in my collection. Distilled 950919 and bottled 081029. Number on back-label is L8176.


8 years old
This 8yo Connemara was a special bottling (once-off) limited to Sweden and there were only 9000 bottles produced. It was released the 1st of october 2009 and sold out on the 19th of October 2012 (I know this since I bought the last two bottles available). 46% ABV and matured in first fill bourbon casks. Laser number on this specific bottle is L9162. Two more bottles of the 8yo is in my collection. Their laser numbers are L9105 and L11071 25/03/11. Please take a look at my tasting note here


Sherry Finish
This is the 1st Connemara to be released in the series Small Batch Collection and it is limited to only 20.000 bottles available world wide. It holds 46% ABV. It was released in 2009. It is a composition consisting of Connemara that is between 5-15yo including around 18 months of finishing in Oloroso sherry casks.  Number on back-label is L9088


Distillers Edition 
This Connemara was a special bottling limited to the french market. It was released in 2010. This is the first release in a series called Small Batch Edition (not to be mistaken for the Small Batch Collection which for the moment consists of Connemara Sherry Finish and Connemara Turf Mór). 43% ABV which is quite odd for being Connemara. This bottling is said to be matured partly in sherry casks but to med it tastes very similar to the standard bourbon matured Connemara. Laser number is L12030 14/02/12.  


Turf Mór
The Turf Mór (meaning 'Big Peat') is the 2nd Connemara to be released in the series Small Batch Collection and it is limited to only 20.000 bottles. It holds 58,2% ABV. It was released in December 2010 primarily for the UK, Belgium, Netherlands, Luxemburg, and Ireland but of course available online to the rest of the world. According to official sources the malt is peated to more than 50ppm but some unofficial sources say between 53-58ppm (in contrast to the normal 14-20ppm of the other Connemaras). The story behind this is that the distillery by misstake received some heavily peated malt and could not stop production so in order to keep regular production going they mixed it with unpeated malt. The idea then came to mind to see how Connemara with just heavily peated malt would turn out and the Turf Mór was thus created! It is some 3 years old and is said to have had a short finish in sherry casks. The Laser number is L13082 26/06/13. Please take part of my tasting note here 



                  
The first Single Cask, K92/30 3713 for Celtic Whiskey Shop

This is the first single cask Connemara ever to be released! As you can understand it is very rare indeed and I am very grateful of Adrian a.k.a The Irish Whiskey Chaser for parting with this bottle. It has been matured in a first fill bourbon cask. 46% ABV bottle no. 36. Distilled 920818 and bottled 051028. Number on back label is L5181. 



Single Cask 3767 for Celtic Whiskey Shop
This single cask Connemara is the first 18 year old Connemara ever released! It was sold exclusively at the Celtic Whiskey Shop. It was matured in a first fill bourbon cask. 46% ABV bottle no. 75. Distilled 920811 and bottled 101108. Laser number is L10201. Big thanks to my good friend Ian for parting with this bottle!  

 
                                 Single Cask 155 Amontillado finish, for Celtic Whiskey Shop
Sold exclusively for the Celtic Whiskey Shop. 46% ABV bottle no. 300. This is the third 18yo and SC Connemara released. But not only that, if you count not only the years but also the days you will find that this was at the time of it's release also the oldest Connemara ever released (18 years and 9 months  old). On top of that, this is the 4th sherry finished Connemara and it has a quite interesting story. This is what Liquid Irish writes regarding this bottling:

"This month [june 2011] sees the unveiling of the Connemara Cask 155 Emilio Hidalgo Amontillado Finish. There is a good story behind it. Bodegas Emilio Hidalgo told the shop that they don't buy or sell casks and, indeed, hadn't bought a new cask in 40 years. That's because they use the solera process for maturing sherry, which never actually empties a cask but draws off a portion and immediately refills it with slightly younger stock.

You can imagine that the sherry over the decades has had time to thoroughly permeate the wood. Contrast this with the sherry casks typically used in an Irish distillery which have been "seasoned" with sherry for only two years. Those have typically been filled with Oloroso sherry. Amontillado is not dissimilar but it has a slightly less oxidised character. Anyway, they convinced the producer to part with a cask and it has spent the last 12 months maturing some of Cooley's peated malt"
It was distilled 920831 and bottled 110512. Number on back-label is L11114 09/06/11.


 
Single Cask 4082 for Gothia Whisky Society
This is one of the best SC Connemaras I've ever tried, and a really rare one! It was bottled by a Swedish whisky club in Gothenburg, called Gothia Whisky Society (GWS). This bottling is special because when it was released it was the second official 18yo SC Connemara ever to be released! The story behind this bottling is that Stephen Teeling visited the GWS and during the tasting the members of the club were very generously offered to buy a cask. I have enjoyed one bottle of this  one (bottle no. 39, which I bought from my very good friend Peter of the swedish independent bottler Svenska Eldvatten). A bit later I managed to source yet another bottle, no. 206. It holds 56,4% ABV. Distilled 920826 and bottled 110117, number on back label is L11011.







Single Cask 1076 for the international whisky festival Holland 2011
This single cask Connemara is a 10 year old and was specially selected for the 2011 international whisky festival of Holland. It has been matured in a bourbon cask. 46% ABV bottle no. 275. Distilled 010313 and bottled 110913. This green paper box with golden paper on the inside seems to be very rare; so far I have only seen it for one other bottling (also a single cask release). Laser number is L11210 12/09/11. 

Bog Oak
This is a very special expression of Connemara. It is the first and so far only release in a series called Connoisseurs Collection. It is the first release ever, in the world, of whisky finished in casks partly consisting of bog oak. Please take part of my tasting note for more info of this very special Connemara by clicking here This particular bottle was presented as a gift to me by former master distiller Brian Quinn when I visited the Kilbeggan distillery on the 27th of July 2012. The whisky holds 57,5% ABV and this is bottle no. 610 of 1000. Batch no. V11/07. It was bottled 111017 and the laser number is L11251 17/10/11. 




  



Single Cask K92/34 4185 for Single Malt Whisky Shop
This is an alternate version (a so called "split casks") of a 15yo single cask bottling for 100 proof whiskyclub According to my sources some of the whisky from this 180 litre bourbon cask was not purchased by the whisky club, and a very limited number of bottles was hence bottled for Jan Vissers "Single Malt Whisky Shop" in Belgium. The whisky holds 58,9% ABV This is bottle no 068. The whisky was distilled 920831 and bottled 080422. No laser (or label) number. A big thanks to Mark Dermul (and friends) for managing to hunt down this rare bottle for me!


Single Cask K92/34 4188 selected by Guy Boyen for www.tasttoe.com
This is definitely a very rare single cask Connemara 15 years old at 58,5% ABV. The bottle number is no. 011. It was distilled 920831 and bottled 070812. According to my sources this bottling was sold without the sealing cap to prevent the bottles to be sold further. No laser (or label) number. A big thanks to Mark Dermul (and friends) for the tremendous effort in hunting down also this bottle for me!


Single Cask 1375 for Belgium
10 year old. 52% ABV Bottle no 266. Distilled 010403 and bottled 110902. The Laser number is L11212 18/10/11. I opened and tasted this bottle for a Connemara-tasting I did, hence it is no longer in my collection. But still, a big thanks to Mark Dermul (and friends) for hunting down also this bottle for me!



Single Cask K 1252 Ambassadors Choice 
This is a very special 8 year old Connemara limited to Belgium only. This particular Connemara is a single bourbon cask that was chosen by Cooley brand ambassador Aoife O'Sullivan. It holds 49% ABV Bottle no. 206 of  circa 230. Distilled 010327 and bottled 090824. Number on back-label is L9107. Please take a look at my tasting note here! (I have two bottles and just had to taste one of them!)



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