Kirkland Irish Whiskey

We were driving by a CostCo and decided to hit their liquor store. Which you don’t need a membership to shop at! It is apparently illegal to have private alcohol stores? We don’t have a CostCo nearby so I had to grab this huge bottle of Kirkland Irish Whiskey to try out.

Kirkland Irish Whiskey
Kirkland Irish Whiskey

The Nose

The nose on this Kirkland offering is subtle. It hints at butter cookies but it is really hard to appreciate through the alcohol. Not super impressive so far.

The Palate

The mouth feel is clean, but has lots of sharp edges. Those sharp edges continue all the way to the finish with a stab of alcohol.

Of course I couldn’t try this without comparing it to Jameson right?

Kirkland Irish Whiskey Vs Jameson

It is really hard to see in the pictures, but the Kirkland offering is just a tiny bit darker than the Jameson. Picking the Jameson by nose was very easy, it all comes down to the alcohol burn. Neither has a strong nose, but the Kirkland Irish Whisky really hits in with the alcohol in comparison. Even my wife, who does not like whiskey, could pick out the Kirkland Irish Whiskey. It is the one that smelled “stronger” of alcohol.

The mouth feels are very similar. The very first note on the tip of my tongue makes me wonder if the Kirkland Irish Whiskey might be sourced from Irish Distillers Ltd. Yes, the same company that owns Jameson. From what I can find on the public forums, it does appear these two are coming from the same source. For obvious reasons, CostCo wants to keep this a mystery.

A lot of other reviews comment on the sweet creaminess of the the Kirkland Branded Whiskey. I was really looking forward to enjoying that! Sadly, the only thing I could really appreciate was a bit of sweetness mixed in with those sharp edges.

For me, the flavor comparison is close. Kirkland Irish Whiskey has an age statement and is an excellent budget offering. I just think the Jameson is smoother and easier to sip. If you are going for volume per dollar though, the Kirkland option is the clear winner.

The Score – Kirkland Irish Whiskey

Jameson scored an 75/100, and while this Kirkland Irish Whiskey is a huge value, it is not as good. I’m scoring it a 65/100 putting it at the uppermost range of Mixed Drinks Only.

Color

Golden brown.

Proof

40.0% ABV

Pros:

  • Holy carp, this was only $18 bucks.
  • Very economical if you are making mixed drinks.
  • Aged 4 years.

Cons:

  • Very faint nose that is hard to get to because of how alcohol forward this whiskey is.
  • Rough edges on the finish.
  • Even though its twice as much volume for a few dollars less, I would still go with a bottle of regular old Jameson.
BottleScorePrice
Redbreast Cask Strength97$100 / 750ml
High N’ Wicked The Wild Rover Single Malt Irish Whiskey97$160 / 750ml
Old Forester 1920 Prohibition Style Bourbon96$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 12 Years96$70 / 750ml
Jameson The Distiller’s Safe95$70 / 750ml
Colonel E.H. Taylor Small Batch Bourbon94$45 / 750ml
Redbreast Lustau Edition92$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 1591$115 / 750ml
The Dubliner 10 Year89$70 / 750ml
Tullamore D.E.W. 14 Year81$65 / 700ml
Jameson IPA Edition80$30 / 750ml
Redbreast Kentucky Oak Edition Irish Whiskey80$125 / 750ml
Don Julio 194280$190 / 750ml
Basil Hayden’s75$35 / 750ml
Jameson Irish Whiskey75$25 / 750ml
John L. Sullivan Irish Whiskey72$25 / 750ml
Tullamore Dew Caribbean Rum Cask Finish Irish Whiskey72$30 / 750ml
Bushmills 10 Year Irish Whiskey72$50 / 750ml
Clyde May’s Original Alabama Style Whiskey71$35 / 750ml
Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey70$40 / 750ml
Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey70$20 / 750ml
Kirkland Irish Whiskey65$18 / 1500ml
Wellsley Farms Irish Whiskey65$28 / 1500ml
Drumshanbo Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey62$65 / 750ml
Stillhouse Black Bourbon61$20 / 750ml
Jameson Orange55$30 / 750ml
Buffalo Trace55$25 / 750ml
Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey51$30 / 750ml
Knob Creek Small Batch49$35 / 750ml
Blade And Bow48$50 / 750ml
Proclamation Irish Whiskey44$30 / 750ml
The Temple Bar Irish Whiskey40$60 / 750ml
Redemption Bourbon 40$30 / 750ml
Natterjack Irish Whiskey35$35 / 750ml
Baha Founders Reserve30$65 / 700ml
Woodford Reserve29$35 / 750ml
Breaker29$65 / 750ml
Pure Kentucky28$35 / 750ml
Stranahan's27$60 / 750ml
Egan’s Fortitude Irish Whiskey26$45 / 750ml
Winchester Extra Smooth Bourbon Whiskey15$30 / 750ml
Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey10$20 / 750ml
Hill Billy Bourbon9$20 / 750ml
Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey5$25 / 750ml
The Busker Irish Whiskey4$35 / 750ml
Kavanagh Irish Whiskey3$25 / 750ml
The Balvenie 14 Years Caribbean Cask1$100 / 750ml
American XXX Born Bourbon Whiskey1$25 / 750ml
Pops McCann0$40 / 750ml
Silkie Irish Whiskey0$30 / 750ml

See all Ranked Whiskeys!

Whiskey Dreams – Stillhouse Black Bourbon

I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised when I took the first sip of Stillhouse Black Bourbon. My expectations weren’t that high, as I only paid $22, so on top of being a very drinkable bourbon, it is quite affordable.

Stillhouse Black Bourbon

So how drinkable was it?

The nose hits you with a bit of alcohol, but it quickly mixes with wood char.

The palate starts in a very similar fashion. The alcohol burns then quickly turns to mild oak char that finishes with a touch of bitterness, astringency, and spice from the coffee ground and rye. Those coffee notes through me at first. Stillhouse Black Bourbon is “mellowed in coffee beans”, but I didn’t know that until after I’d taken the first few sips. Then it clicked, that bitterness and astringency is from the coffee.

Even though I’m giving Stillhouse Black Bourbon a 61, putting it in the Mixers or On Ice category, its already a “bottle” that I’ve bought more than once. It is perfect for mixers, and better yet, it is perfect for camping and hiking, where not having a glass bottle is a real bonus.

Color

Dark amber and brown.

Proof

40.0% ABV

Pros

  • Packaged in a metal tin, which makes it perfect for camping and hiking as well as parties where you don’t want to take a glass bottle.
  • Great bang for the buck when it comes to value.

Cons

  • Some drinkers may not like the opening astringency.
  • If you like your whiskey neat, this might not be right for you. It really does need some ice or be put in a mixed drink to help smooth out the rough edges.
  • It is packaged in a squarish metal case, while being awesome, also means its hard to tell when you are almost out of Stillhouse.
BottleScorePrice
Redbreast Cask Strength97$100 / 750ml
High N’ Wicked The Wild Rover Single Malt Irish Whiskey97$160 / 750ml
Old Forester 1920 Prohibition Style Bourbon96$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 12 Years96$70 / 750ml
Jameson The Distiller’s Safe95$70 / 750ml
Colonel E.H. Taylor Small Batch Bourbon94$45 / 750ml
Redbreast Lustau Edition92$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 1591$115 / 750ml
The Dubliner 10 Year89$70 / 750ml
Tullamore D.E.W. 14 Year81$65 / 700ml
Jameson IPA Edition80$30 / 750ml
Redbreast Kentucky Oak Edition Irish Whiskey80$125 / 750ml
Don Julio 194280$190 / 750ml
Basil Hayden’s75$35 / 750ml
Jameson Irish Whiskey75$25 / 750ml
John L. Sullivan Irish Whiskey72$25 / 750ml
Tullamore Dew Caribbean Rum Cask Finish Irish Whiskey72$30 / 750ml
Bushmills 10 Year Irish Whiskey72$50 / 750ml
Clyde May’s Original Alabama Style Whiskey71$35 / 750ml
Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey70$40 / 750ml
Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey70$20 / 750ml
Kirkland Irish Whiskey65$18 / 1500ml
Wellsley Farms Irish Whiskey65$28 / 1500ml
Drumshanbo Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey62$65 / 750ml
Stillhouse Black Bourbon61$20 / 750ml
Jameson Orange55$30 / 750ml
Buffalo Trace55$25 / 750ml
Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey51$30 / 750ml
Knob Creek Small Batch49$35 / 750ml
Blade And Bow48$50 / 750ml
Proclamation Irish Whiskey44$30 / 750ml
The Temple Bar Irish Whiskey40$60 / 750ml
Redemption Bourbon 40$30 / 750ml
Natterjack Irish Whiskey35$35 / 750ml
Baha Founders Reserve30$65 / 700ml
Woodford Reserve29$35 / 750ml
Breaker29$65 / 750ml
Pure Kentucky28$35 / 750ml
Stranahan's27$60 / 750ml
Egan’s Fortitude Irish Whiskey26$45 / 750ml
Winchester Extra Smooth Bourbon Whiskey15$30 / 750ml
Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey10$20 / 750ml
Hill Billy Bourbon9$20 / 750ml
Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey5$25 / 750ml
The Busker Irish Whiskey4$35 / 750ml
Kavanagh Irish Whiskey3$25 / 750ml
The Balvenie 14 Years Caribbean Cask1$100 / 750ml
American XXX Born Bourbon Whiskey1$25 / 750ml
Pops McCann0$40 / 750ml
Silkie Irish Whiskey0$30 / 750ml

Whiskey Dreams – Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey

According to Jack Daniel’s, this whiskey is:


A blend of Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey and a unique honey liqueur of our own making, for a taste that’s one-of-a-kind and unmistakably Jack. With hints of honey and a finish that’s naturally smooth, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey offers a taste of the unexpected.
-Jack Daniel’s


Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey

Clearly Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey was an attempt to compete with other flavored whiskeys. Even if technically its not even a whiskey. It’s a Liqueur because of how its created.

The nose is all sugar. Yes, it smells a bit like honey, but really all I get is sugar and alcohol.

The mouth feel isn’t much better. It is sweet, but also sticks to my tongue as if it is just a bit too much like syrup. It only gets worse on the swallow. As well as being sickly sweet it has an odd aftertaste. Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey is one of those drams that I kept licking my mouth as if I was trying to physically scrub away the flavor.

These drams are always hard to score. Instead of how much did I like it, the score becomes how much did I dislike it? It is basically a rating of how to torture me with Whiskey once the rating goes below 29. So if you want to torture me someday Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey scored a 10/100 making it just bad.

I’m not a huge fan of Flavored Whiskeys. Whiskey should taste like Whiskey as far as I’m concerned. I know the segment is expanding in lots of markets and some people love them. I’m just not one of those people. If you love Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey or other flavored whiskeys let me know int the comments and I’ll try the out.

Color

Way too much potassium in your pee.

Proof

35.0% ABV

Pros

  • If you like to drink syrup this might be a Whiskey for you.
  • Its super sweet and at only 70 proof might be good for new whiskey drinkers?

Cons

  • Too sweet.
  • Feels like a dessert but doesn’t taste good (to me).
BottleScorePrice
Redbreast Cask Strength97$100 / 750ml
High N’ Wicked The Wild Rover Single Malt Irish Whiskey97$160 / 750ml
Old Forester 1920 Prohibition Style Bourbon96$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 12 Years96$70 / 750ml
Jameson The Distiller’s Safe95$70 / 750ml
Colonel E.H. Taylor Small Batch Bourbon94$45 / 750ml
Redbreast Lustau Edition92$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 1591$115 / 750ml
The Dubliner 10 Year89$70 / 750ml
Tullamore D.E.W. 14 Year81$65 / 700ml
Jameson IPA Edition80$30 / 750ml
Redbreast Kentucky Oak Edition Irish Whiskey80$125 / 750ml
Don Julio 194280$190 / 750ml
Basil Hayden’s75$35 / 750ml
Jameson Irish Whiskey75$25 / 750ml
John L. Sullivan Irish Whiskey72$25 / 750ml
Tullamore Dew Caribbean Rum Cask Finish Irish Whiskey72$30 / 750ml
Bushmills 10 Year Irish Whiskey72$50 / 750ml
Clyde May’s Original Alabama Style Whiskey71$35 / 750ml
Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey70$40 / 750ml
Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey70$20 / 750ml
Kirkland Irish Whiskey65$18 / 1500ml
Wellsley Farms Irish Whiskey65$28 / 1500ml
Drumshanbo Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey62$65 / 750ml
Stillhouse Black Bourbon61$20 / 750ml
Jameson Orange55$30 / 750ml
Buffalo Trace55$25 / 750ml
Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey51$30 / 750ml
Knob Creek Small Batch49$35 / 750ml
Blade And Bow48$50 / 750ml
Proclamation Irish Whiskey44$30 / 750ml
The Temple Bar Irish Whiskey40$60 / 750ml
Redemption Bourbon 40$30 / 750ml
Natterjack Irish Whiskey35$35 / 750ml
Baha Founders Reserve30$65 / 700ml
Woodford Reserve29$35 / 750ml
Breaker29$65 / 750ml
Pure Kentucky28$35 / 750ml
Stranahan's27$60 / 750ml
Egan’s Fortitude Irish Whiskey26$45 / 750ml
Winchester Extra Smooth Bourbon Whiskey15$30 / 750ml
Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey10$20 / 750ml
Hill Billy Bourbon9$20 / 750ml
Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey5$25 / 750ml
The Busker Irish Whiskey4$35 / 750ml
Kavanagh Irish Whiskey3$25 / 750ml
The Balvenie 14 Years Caribbean Cask1$100 / 750ml
American XXX Born Bourbon Whiskey1$25 / 750ml
Pops McCann0$40 / 750ml
Silkie Irish Whiskey0$30 / 750ml

Whiskey Dreams – Hill Billy Bourbon

One of my sons brought this bottle of Hill Billy Bourbon home as a gift because he knows I like to try new bottles. I now have to question if my son has it out for me. I ended up making a small modification to this bottle, updating the label From “Hilly Billy Bourbon” to “Hell Billy Bourbon”.

Hill Billy Bourbon

Even copious amounts o ice could not save this dram. Did I get a bad bottle? How in the world did this win awards? Because on their website this won several.

The nose had faint hits of vanilla and spice, but was overpowered by alcohol and wood char.

The mouth feel was clean, but for me this Hill Billy Bourbon was all jagged edges and burn on the tongue. Hill Billy Bourbon had a faint but very unpleasant antiseptic aftertaste that overpowered the more pleasant hints of vanilla.

I’m going to give Hill Billy a 9/100 as I can’t really see ever getting another bottle. Yes, the bottle looks like I did some damage to it, but I was using it as a taster for new drinkers to give them an example of what Just Bad tasted like. It is always important to give someone a point of reference. Out of two dozen tastings, I did have one person really like it, which is great. Drink what you like and enjoy it, but for me this isn’t it.

Spend a few bucks more and get a bottle of Buffalo Trace. Those extra five dollars make a world of difference.

Color

A morning pee when your quite dehydrated and may have eaten a few orange crayons the night before.

Proof

50.5% ABV

Pros

  • Cheap.
  • Great bottle if you are trying to show someone the difference between low end and high end Bourbon.

Cons

  • You get what you pay for, and this was cheap after all.
  • Tastes a little bit like someone poured some antiseptic into a glass of cheap bourbon.
BottleScorePrice
Redbreast Cask Strength97$100 / 750ml
High N’ Wicked The Wild Rover Single Malt Irish Whiskey97$160 / 750ml
Old Forester 1920 Prohibition Style Bourbon96$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 12 Years96$70 / 750ml
Jameson The Distiller’s Safe95$70 / 750ml
Colonel E.H. Taylor Small Batch Bourbon94$45 / 750ml
Redbreast Lustau Edition92$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 1591$115 / 750ml
The Dubliner 10 Year89$70 / 750ml
Tullamore D.E.W. 14 Year81$65 / 700ml
Jameson IPA Edition80$30 / 750ml
Redbreast Kentucky Oak Edition Irish Whiskey80$125 / 750ml
Don Julio 194280$190 / 750ml
Basil Hayden’s75$35 / 750ml
Jameson Irish Whiskey75$25 / 750ml
John L. Sullivan Irish Whiskey72$25 / 750ml
Tullamore Dew Caribbean Rum Cask Finish Irish Whiskey72$30 / 750ml
Bushmills 10 Year Irish Whiskey72$50 / 750ml
Clyde May’s Original Alabama Style Whiskey71$35 / 750ml
Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey70$40 / 750ml
Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey70$20 / 750ml
Kirkland Irish Whiskey65$18 / 1500ml
Wellsley Farms Irish Whiskey65$28 / 1500ml
Drumshanbo Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey62$65 / 750ml
Stillhouse Black Bourbon61$20 / 750ml
Jameson Orange55$30 / 750ml
Buffalo Trace55$25 / 750ml
Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey51$30 / 750ml
Knob Creek Small Batch49$35 / 750ml
Blade And Bow48$50 / 750ml
Proclamation Irish Whiskey44$30 / 750ml
The Temple Bar Irish Whiskey40$60 / 750ml
Redemption Bourbon 40$30 / 750ml
Natterjack Irish Whiskey35$35 / 750ml
Baha Founders Reserve30$65 / 700ml
Woodford Reserve29$35 / 750ml
Breaker29$65 / 750ml
Pure Kentucky28$35 / 750ml
Stranahan's27$60 / 750ml
Egan’s Fortitude Irish Whiskey26$45 / 750ml
Winchester Extra Smooth Bourbon Whiskey15$30 / 750ml
Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey10$20 / 750ml
Hill Billy Bourbon9$20 / 750ml
Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey5$25 / 750ml
The Busker Irish Whiskey4$35 / 750ml
Kavanagh Irish Whiskey3$25 / 750ml
The Balvenie 14 Years Caribbean Cask1$100 / 750ml
American XXX Born Bourbon Whiskey1$25 / 750ml
Pops McCann0$40 / 750ml
Silkie Irish Whiskey0$30 / 750ml

Whiskey Dreams – Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey

Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey is distilled by Irish Distillers, at the Midleton distillery in County Cork. It is a blended offering that is just about as affordable as Irish Whiskey should get. I can routinely find Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey for $20 if I’m willing to drive to the big liquor store a few towns away. At $20 bucks, it might just make you wonder how good could it be?

Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey

The nose is really subtle. It’s a little malty and a little sweet that blends with a bit of alcohol.

The sip is just about as subtle. This is a thin whiskey. The mouth feel is watery, but its also beautifully simple. I’d say this is perfect for those times when the friends or the food is the focus, and the whiskey is going to flow freely, which is perfect as this Paddy’s Irish Whiskey is just about as affordable as it gets.

It is also an award winner. When it comes to value, you really can’t beat Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey.

Just Some of Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey Awards

The finish is a little spice that overpowers the malt, but not in a bad way.

I find it amazing that a $20 bottle is also packaged so well.

Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey Packaging

Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey scored a 70/100, putting it just into the Sip Worthy category. Don’t let that score scare you off. At this price, that score is really impressive. There are times when I just crave Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey, and since its a few bucks cheaper than Jameson, it is also easy on the wallet.

Color

Light to medium amber.

Proof

40.0% ABV

Pros

  • For $20 bucks this is a great buy.
  • Great budget whiskey.
  • Affordable whiskey for new drinkers.
  • Amazing value Irish Whiskey with tons of awards.

Cons

  • Not a lot of complexity. Will underwhelm a more appreciative pallet.
  • Not a lot of anything on the nose.
  • After a dram, the next dram goes down easier, which is nice, but also dangerous.
BottleScorePrice
Redbreast Cask Strength97$100 / 750ml
High N’ Wicked The Wild Rover Single Malt Irish Whiskey97$160 / 750ml
Old Forester 1920 Prohibition Style Bourbon96$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 12 Years96$70 / 750ml
Jameson The Distiller’s Safe95$70 / 750ml
Colonel E.H. Taylor Small Batch Bourbon94$45 / 750ml
Redbreast Lustau Edition92$65 / 750ml
Redbreast 1591$115 / 750ml
The Dubliner 10 Year89$70 / 750ml
Tullamore D.E.W. 14 Year81$65 / 700ml
Jameson IPA Edition80$30 / 750ml
Redbreast Kentucky Oak Edition Irish Whiskey80$125 / 750ml
Don Julio 194280$190 / 750ml
Basil Hayden’s75$35 / 750ml
Jameson Irish Whiskey75$25 / 750ml
John L. Sullivan Irish Whiskey72$25 / 750ml
Tullamore Dew Caribbean Rum Cask Finish Irish Whiskey72$30 / 750ml
Bushmills 10 Year Irish Whiskey72$50 / 750ml
Clyde May’s Original Alabama Style Whiskey71$35 / 750ml
Teeling Small Batch Irish Whiskey70$40 / 750ml
Paddy’s Old Irish Whiskey70$20 / 750ml
Kirkland Irish Whiskey65$18 / 1500ml
Wellsley Farms Irish Whiskey65$28 / 1500ml
Drumshanbo Single Pot Still Irish Whiskey62$65 / 750ml
Stillhouse Black Bourbon61$20 / 750ml
Jameson Orange55$30 / 750ml
Buffalo Trace55$25 / 750ml
Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey51$30 / 750ml
Knob Creek Small Batch49$35 / 750ml
Blade And Bow48$50 / 750ml
Proclamation Irish Whiskey44$30 / 750ml
The Temple Bar Irish Whiskey40$60 / 750ml
Redemption Bourbon 40$30 / 750ml
Natterjack Irish Whiskey35$35 / 750ml
Baha Founders Reserve30$65 / 700ml
Woodford Reserve29$35 / 750ml
Breaker29$65 / 750ml
Pure Kentucky28$35 / 750ml
Stranahan's27$60 / 750ml
Egan’s Fortitude Irish Whiskey26$45 / 750ml
Winchester Extra Smooth Bourbon Whiskey15$30 / 750ml
Jack Daniel's Tennessee Honey10$20 / 750ml
Hill Billy Bourbon9$20 / 750ml
Fireball Cinnamon Whiskey5$25 / 750ml
The Busker Irish Whiskey4$35 / 750ml
Kavanagh Irish Whiskey3$25 / 750ml
The Balvenie 14 Years Caribbean Cask1$100 / 750ml
American XXX Born Bourbon Whiskey1$25 / 750ml
Pops McCann0$40 / 750ml
Silkie Irish Whiskey0$30 / 750ml