Our Favorite Irish Single Malt Whiskeys Under $50

Think single malts can only be made in Scotland? Think again. Here are some of our favorites from the Emerald Isle, all under $50.
May 26, 2019
  • 10
    10 Connemara Original Peated Single Malt
    83
    Peaty & Smoky
    Named for the rugged Atlantic coastal region, Connemara Original Peated Single Malt is one of just a few Irish whiskies that celebrate the revival of the tradition of drying the malted barley over peat fires.  The peat smoke that rises from the fires up through the drying malts guilds the barley with a delicately complexity that speak to the rich history of Irish whiskey production.  This whiskey is bottled after being rested in ex-bourbon barrels at a gentle 80 proof.
  • 9
    9 Glendalough Single Malt 7 Year
    83
    Spicy
    Glendalough Distillery was founded in 2011 by five friends interested in reviving the culture of craft distilling in Ireland. Their 7 Year Single Malt refers to St. Kevin (his image graces the label), who spent seven years in the local wilderness before building the "seven city of churches" in the Glendalough Valley. Using a malted barley mash, this whiskey is aged seven years in first-fill bourbon barrels. Non-chill-filtered, it's cut to 46% ABV with Wicklow spring water.
  • 8
    8 The Quiet Man 8 Year Single Malt
    86
    Floral & Fruity
    This is a sourced whiskey bottled by Niche drinks while the brand builds its own distillery in Derry, Northern Ireland. The single malt has been aged 8 years in former bourbon casks, then transferred to newer, first-fill bourbon casks for finishing. Available in the US as of early 2016.
  • 7
    7 The Irishman Single Malt
    86
    Fruity & Sweet
    The Single Malt is triple distilled and aged in a mixture of ex-bourbon and ex-Oloroso sherry casks. The whiskey is produced in 6000 bottle batches and are labeled with batch and bottle number. The brand has recently had a makeover and recently announced plans to build their own distillery in County Carlow, so expect to hear more from this small brand in the years to come.
  • 6
    6 The Sexton Single Malt
    85
    Fruity & Sweet
    The Sexton Single Malt Irish Whiskey is triple distilled from 100% malted Irish barley using copper pot stills. Aged in ex-oloroso sherry butts for a minimum of four years. Bottled in a unique, solid black hexagonal bottle at 40% ABV. Available in the US beginning November 2017.
  • 5
    5 Locke's 8 Year Single Malt
    87
    Vanilla & Sweet
    This single malt Irish whiskey is named after the family that originally owned Kilbeggan Distillery until its closure. The distillery was eventually bought by Cooley Distillery and now stands as an Irish whiskey museum. Double-distilled and slightly peated, it's made from malt whiskeys 8 to 10 years old and aged in ex-bourbon casks. Note: This is not currently available in the US.
  • 4
    4 West Cork 10 Year
    87
    Fruity & Vanilla
    West Cork Distillers was founded in 2008 by childhood friends in in Skibbereen in the heart of West Cork. Though they are distilling products currently, this single malt was sourced. This 10-year whiskey is aged in first-fill ex-bourbon casks and is non-chill filtered.
  • 3
    3 Tyrconnell Single Malt
    87
    Fruity & Vanilla
    Tyrconnell was an Irish whiskey brand produced at now defunct Watt Distillery. They named a whiskey after their horse, The Tyrconnell, which subsequently won a race at 100 to 1 odds back in 1876. This whiskey is currently distilled at Cooley Distillery (and soon at the refurbished Kilbeggan Distillery) and is a double distilled single malt whiskey. Most Irish whiskeys on the market are triple distilled and/or blended, but that is trend is slowly changing.
  • 2
    2 Bushmills 10 Year Single Malt
    89
    Fruity & Vanilla
    Triple distilled in copper pot stills, this single malt whiskey is aged primarily in ex-bourbon barrels. Old Bushmills Distillery has survived for over four centuries through the English malt tax, fires, the Great Famine, Prohibition, and two World Wars. With bottlings such as the 10 year Single Malt, one suspects it will endure for quite a bit longer.
  • 1
    1 Knappogue Castle 12 Year Bourbon Cask Matured
    91
    Sweet & Rich
    Mark Edwin Andrews is an American who, in the 1960's, purchased, and with his wife, restored an Irish castle named Knappogue. He also acquired casks of Irish Whiskey which he aged and bottled for sale. Knappogue recently began to release age statement bottlings rather than vintage dating their bottles. This is a single malt whiskey that is triple-distilled and aged for 12 years in ex-bourbon casks.