McFadden Spirit Drink. Because when you can’t call it whiskey, you call it spirits. Either that, or they’ve jammed the souls of some indigent Irish washer children into the mash. I guess that’s the same thing; spirits is spirits, right?
Technically, the full name of this is McFadden Spirit Drink A Recipe of Whiskey & Malt. This a long way of saying they blended aged and unaged whiskey in such relative proportions that the result can no longer be called whiskey. They also admit right on the label to adding caramel colouring – not an unforgivable sin in and of itself, but if its use is so noteworthy as to require mentioning in the marketing side of the label, that’s something else.
McFadden is apparently produced by West Cork Distillers out of, presumably, West Cork or the western part of Cork in Ireland. That said, they don’t admit to making it. There’s no McFadden on their site. The closest thing to the extant marketing on this bottle is a line of drinks called West Cork that carry the moniker “a fusion of whiskey & malt”. I guess they are reworking their brand assets; read whatever you like into that euphemism.
How To Drink Whisky has two sections of noteworthy information I can only find in their McFadden article: a treatise on the EU economic dynamics that led to the birth of this company, and an update from the distillers themselves about their process and products. There’s a lot of hedging about legal requirements in that update, but it’s an interesting read. But you’re here for what *we* thought, and here it is:
Dan – pale, not at all vibrant
Simon – artificial
Ryan – golden brown
Dan – peat, rubbing alcohol
Simon – smoke? hazelnut
Ryan – mashy, cane sugar
Dan – funk, acidic, burn, immediate heart burn, artificial caramel
Simon – relatively inert, then unpleasant and burn
Ryan – undefined spice, nail polish, not that sweet
Dan – heartburn
Simon – burn
Ryan – not sweet
Dan – less astringent, less caramel, smoke
Simon – calms down but still not that good
Ryan – fake sugar taste comes out more
McFadden Spirit Drink – 40% 750ml – $49.94 – Ireland
Try it? No. Buy it? No.