"Ask my bollocks!”
That's Conor McGregor, after being asked, “Is your whiskey good?”
Before his big fight on Saturday (you may have heard something about that), UFC superstar Conor McGregor was already on the defensive. Not about his chances. But about Proper No. Twelve, his new Irish whiskey.
“Trust me, it is the tastiest Irish whiskey there is on the planet,” he said. “I f*cking love it and I don't care what anybody says. I'm not even trying to sell it, just have a sip. Just take a bottle and enjoy it.” (He also goaded the crowd at his press conference to scream, “F*ck the Jameson brothers.”)
Does it live up to “The Notorious” Irishman’s impossible hype? Let’s break it down.
What is this? An 80-proof blend of Irish grain and single malt, as fashioned by the oldest licensed whiskey distillery in the world and David Elder, a master distiller (previously from Guinness). It's named after McGregor’s home district of Crumlin in Dublin's postal district 12.
What’s it good for? McGregor will donate $5 for every case sold (up to a million dollars) to first responder organizations and charities.
What’s it claiming? A “rich and smooth” blend that’s “properly balanced” with “hints of vanilla, honey and toasted wood.” Also, it’s triple distilled ... you know, like all other Irish whiskey.
What are other people saying?
“I drank a lot of bad whiskeys in my day — this was one of them.” — Business Insider
“Very basic ... an average example of Irish blended whiskey.” — Paste
“I spent a long time trying to get more out of the whiskey but other than a bit of nuttiness, and quite a lot of tannin, there is not much there.” — The Irish Times
“Conor put this out to make sure it was available with his fight this weekend ... had it spent longer in the casks, it would be better ... but it didn't, and this is what's out there.” — TheWhiskeyDic on Reddit’s r/whiskey
What is InsideHook saying? Astringent on the nose, Proper hits you with a formidable scent. It stings the nostrils, as a wise man once said. As for the taste ... it’s fine. Sort of (surprisingly) reminded me of sugar-free butterscotch or caramel candy — there was something a bit artificial there. Not offensive, but also doesn't provide enough of a punch to inspire.
What does this mix with? Speaking of mixed arts (heyo!), the Proper with ginger ale and lime is a perfectly solid drink. Consider this a solid mixing Irish whiskey — it’s also smooth enough for shots, though more of a chore for slow sippin’.
How much is this? $25-$30, and it’s selling out quickly; according to the brand's publicist, Proper had 48,000 requests at the site SipWhiskey in the first two days, and the Binny’s liquor store chain sold out in one weekend. Plus, Proper has garnered 253K followers on Instagram (more than twice that of Jameson) .
Is this the best celebrity Irish whiskey on the market? My friend, do have a sip of The Pogues.
Should I drink this? You’d be better off training like Conor than mixing whiskey blends like Conor.
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