redbreast 21 vs. 27

Redbreast 21 vs. 27: A Spirited Debate

We’re about to embark on a spirited journey between two titans: Redbreast 21 and Redbreast 27. And trust me, it’s not just about age; it’s about character.

I’ve always been a bit of a whiskey enthusiast, and the Redbreast line has caught my eye more than once. Recently, I decided to delve deeper, focusing on the Redbreast 21 and 27. 

The experience? Well, it was quite the journey.

The first time I had a go at Redbreast 21, it felt like a handshake with an old friend. Reliable, familiar, with a touch of spice that keeps the conversation lively. 

But then, Redbreast 27 entered the scene. This one? It’s like a sage. It’s seen things, and been places, and carries a depth that’s both intriguing and comforting.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not playing favorites here. The 21 is your go-to mate for a night out, while the 27 is that wise elder you’d sit with under the stars, pondering life’s mysteries. 

Both stellar, both unique.

Redbreast 21 vs. 27: Quick-Look Comparison

redbreast 21 vs. 27: redbreast 21
Redbreast 21
NoseHoney, lemon zest, stewed fruits
PalateVanilla, honey, green apples, lemon
MouthfeelRich, oily texture
FinishLong, spicy, lemon curd, ginger
Age21 years old
Cask/BarrelsFirst fill ex-bourbon and first fill Sherry
Strength46% ABV/92 Proof
Redbreast 21
redbreast 21 vs. 27: redbreast 27
Redbreast 27
NoseBarley-rich pot still, cherry cheesecake
PalateIntense dried fruits, creamy vanilla
MouthfeelTropical fruit influence
FinishApple pie filling, dried pineapple, roasted nuts
Age27 years
Cask/BarrelsBourbon casks, sherry casks, ruby port casks
Strength54.6% ABV/109.2 Proof
Redbreast 27

Redbreast 21 vs. 27: Redbreast 21 Review

Redbreast 21 isn’t just another whiskey on the shelf. With its rich history and adherence to traditional pot still production, it stands as a testament to what Irish whiskey can and should be.

On the nose, Redbreast 21 greets you with a delightful aroma. Tropical fruits, especially pineapple and a hint of mango are evident. There’s also a gentle nutty undertone, adding a layer of complexity.

And then, regarding texture, Redbreast 21 is smooth, almost comforting. It’s not overly thick, but it certainly makes its presence known.

On the flavor front, Redbreast 21 is consistent and well-balanced. The tropical fruits detected in its aroma are present in its taste, complemented by a mild spice kick. It’s a harmonious blend, neither too sweet nor too spicy.

Are there any similar whiskies to the 21-year-old?

For those who’ve developed a liking for Redbreast 21, Green Spot is another worthy contender. It shares some similarities that fans of Redbreast 21 might appreciate. And while they are indeed akin to one another, we have a Redbreast 15 vs. Redbreast 12 showdown that you might want to check out.

With an alcohol content of 46% ABV, Redbreast 21 is robust but not overwhelming. It strikes a balance, making it suitable for both casual sips and special occasions.

Now, you may ask: is it worth the money? 

Value is always in the eye of the beholder. Given the quality, depth, and experience that Redbreast 21 delivers, many enthusiasts believe it offers good value for its price at £230/$277. But as always, personal preferences play a significant role.

Redbreast 21 vs. 27: Redbreast 27 Review

When it comes to whiskey, age often brings depth, complexity, and a certain gravitas. Redbreast 27 is no exception. Let’s break down this aged beauty.

On the nose, Redbreast 27 offers a rich and inviting aroma. There’s an evident presence of dried fruits, think figs and raisins, complemented by a hint of toasted oak. As you delve deeper, there’s a subtle undertone of dark chocolate, making the nose both layered and intriguing.

On the mouth, the texture of Redbreast 27 is something to be lauded. It’s velvety, with a certain weightiness that feels substantial without being overpowering. It’s the kind of whiskey that demands you take a moment to truly experience its mouthfeel.

Flavor-wise, Redbreast 27 is a symphony. Those dried fruits detected in the aroma come to the forefront, joined by notes of vanilla and a touch of spice. There’s also a hint of that dark chocolate, adding a slight bitterness that balances out the sweetness beautifully.

Moreover, Redbreast 27 comes in at a robust 54.6% ABV. It’s strong, reflecting its age and depth, but it’s not just about the alcohol content. The strength complements the flavors, making each sip a full-bodied experience.

However, given its age and the complexity it offers, Redbreast 27 doesn’t come cheap at £440/$530. It’s a premium product with a price tag to match. However, for those who truly appreciate the nuances of a well-aged whiskey, many would argue it’s worth the investment.

Now, with that all said and done, try exploring Macallan 18. This Speyside special shares some harmonious notes and complexities (it even shares a close price range) that could resonate with a Redbreast enthusiast.

Comparing Redbreast 21 vs. 27

The Redbreast name carries significant weight, synonymous with quality and tradition. Two of its standout offerings, the 21-year-old and the 27-year-old, aren’t something you discuss a comparison with every day. 

But how do they truly measure up against each other?

Starting with the nose, Redbreast 21 greets you with a delightful tropical aroma. There’s a clear presence of pineapple, perhaps a hint of mango, and a subtle backdrop of nuttiness. 

On the other hand, the 27-year-old variant offers a richer experience. The dried fruits, especially figs and raisins, are more pronounced. Add to that a touch of toasted oak and an intriguing dark chocolate note, and you have a more layered and complex profile.

When it comes to mouthfeel, the 21 is smooth and approachable. It’s the kind of whiskey that’s easy on the palate, making it perfect for both newcomers and seasoned drinkers. The 27, however, demands a bit more attention. Its velvety and weighty texture speaks of its age and the depth of flavors it houses.

In terms of flavor, the 21 continues its tropical theme, with those fruity notes being evident in the taste, balanced out by a gentle spice. The 27, true to its nose, brings forward flavors of dried fruits, complemented by vanilla, a hint of spice, and a touch of dark chocolate. It’s a deeper, more intricate dance of flavors, reflecting its extended maturation.

Discussing ABV, the Redbreast 21 sits at a respectable 46%. It’s strong enough to make its presence felt but doesn’t overpower it. The 27, with its 54.6% ABV, is bolder, mirroring its age and the complexity it brings to the table.

Now, the 21, while not exactly a budget buy of £230/$277, offers a balance of quality and cost. The 27, with its added years and depth, naturally commands a higher price of £440/$530. It’s an investment, tailored for those who are looking for an elevated whiskey experience. But if you take a closer look, would you still consider Redbreast 21 vs. 27 an investment when it’s actually almost half the price of the former? 

Lastly, when considering how to enjoy them, whether neat or on the rocks, the 21 is versatile. While many would vouch for sipping it neat to appreciate its nuances truly, it can also be enjoyed on the rocks. Personally, I’d give 21 a cube. The 27, given its depth, is often best-savored neat. 

However, for those who find its higher ABV a touch too strong, a single ice cube might just do the trick, opening up its flavors without diluting its essence.

Food Pairings

Now, this part shouldn’t be skipped out. After all, when we talk about distinguished whiskeys like Redbreast 21 vs. 27, food pairing becomes even more pertinent.

Beginning with starters, the Redbreast 21, with its tropical fruit undertones, beautifully complements lighter dishes. Imagine pairing it with smoked salmon, delicate cheeses, or even a crisp salad adorned with a citrusy dressing. The whiskey’s notes can enhance the freshness of these dishes. 

On the other hand, the richer profile of Redbreast 27 is more suited for robust starters. A charcuterie board laden with aged cheeses, cured meats, and olives feels right at home with the Redbreast 27. The whiskey’s dried fruit notes echo the savory flavors of the board, creating a harmonious blend.

Moving on to main courses, the balanced nature of Redbreast 21 offers versatility. It pairs seamlessly with grilled white meats like chicken or turkey, especially if there’s a hint of sweetness in the accompanying sauce. Seafood dishes with a touch of spice also find a friend in this whiskey. 

The 27, given its depth, is more attuned to heartier mains. Think along the lines of roasted lamb, succulent beef steaks, or rich, comforting stews. The whiskey’s inherent dark chocolate and oak nuances stand tall against the robust flavors of these dishes, neither overshadowing nor being overshadowed.

When it’s time for desserts, Redbreast 21’s slightly spicy and tropical profile makes it a companion for fruit-based desserts. Whether it’s a meticulously crafted fruit tart, a tangy lemon cheesecake, or even a humble fruit salad, the 21 adds an extra layer of flavor. 

The 27, with its richer notes of dried fruits and dark chocolate, is a dream partner for desserts like chocolate lava cake, creamy tiramisu, or a dense bread pudding. Each sip of the whiskey accentuates the dessert’s sweetness while introducing its own layers of complexity.

Beyond traditional pairings, both these whiskeys have other uses. They can shine in high-end cocktails, like a classic Old Fashioned or a Whiskey Sour. Culinary-wise, they can add depth to sauces or marinades.

Redbreast 21 vs. 27: Final Thoughts

After countless hours of sipping, savoring, and contemplation, I’ve distilled my thoughts impartially into a definitive scoring table. 

This table aims to shed light on which whiskey, Redbreast 21 or 27, truly stands a notch above the other.

BestRedbreast 21Redbreast 27

Redbreast 21 vs. 27: Author’s Pick

I finally gave it a go, putting Redbreast 21 head-to-head with Redbreast 27. Using my trusty scorecard, I rated them on everything from colour to finish. 

Spoiler alert: it was a close shave, but the numbers don’t lie.


When I looked at Redbreast 21, its colour was unassuming. It didn’t shout for attention, but there was a quiet confidence about it. On the flip side, Redbreast 27 displayed a deeper hue. 

It’s like the whisky was subtly hinting at the extra years it spent maturing, absorbing more from its casks. Both have their appeal, but they certainly set different moods right from the first glance.


Taking a whiff of Redbreast 21, the aroma was upfront. It reminded me of seasoned wood, and there was a certain familiarity to it. 

Now, Redbreast 27 was like a different kind of whisky. The aroma was richer, with the seasoned wood being more pronounced and a hint of dark fruits lurking in the background. It felt like Redbreast 27 had more stories to share, just through its scent.


On the palate, Redbreast 21 was steadfast. It had a firm texture, smooth and even, making its presence known without any fuss. 

Redbreast 27, however, gave me a bit more to think about. It felt richer, with a slight oiliness suggesting a layered experience. It was like Redbreast 27 was challenging me to explore it further.


When it comes to taste, Redbreast 21 truly shines. The notes of vanilla and dried fruits are evident, creating a harmonious and well-rounded profile. It has a clear and balanced taste, making every sip a delightful experience.

Redbreast 27, on the other hand, seems to grapple with its complexity. While the dark fruit notes are pronounced, there’s a touch of spice that, instead of complementing, somewhat muddles its profile. The influence of the ruby port casks, while adding depth, seems to have introduced a layer that not everyone might appreciate.

This makes Redbreast 21 take the lead, offering a more cohesive and enjoyable palate experience.


Another offensive turnaround for Redbreast 21 as it concludes its symphony with a finish that’s both clean and memorable. It leaves a lasting impression, wrapping up its profile with precision and clarity. Each sip concludes with a sense of satisfaction, making you anticipate the next. 

Redbreast 27, however, seems to overstay its welcome a bit. While the dried fruits and subtle spiciness are evident, they linger a tad too long, making the finish feel a bit drawn out. It’s like a story that, while intriguing, takes a few extra pages to conclude.

After diving deep into the world of Redbreast, it’s clear that both the 21 and 27 are like siblings with their own quirks. While Redbreast 27 is the reliable elder, always hitting the right notes, Redbreast 21 is the adventurous younger one, sometimes a tad too eager to impress. 

But in the grand scheme of things, isn’t variety the spice of life?

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