It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia has become one of the most iconic television comedies of all time. The heart of the show is the often psychopathic gang behaving horribly in or around Paddy’s Pub, a very divey Irish(ish) bar in Philly. So it should come as no surprise that the show’s creators — Rob McElhenney, Glenn Howerton, and Charlie Day — got into the whiskey game with an Irish whiskey.
What’s more of a shock is the quality, considering this is the crew who invented drinking wine out of sunscreen bottles.
Getting into Irish whiskey is a bold move when celebrity-driven bourbon whiskeys and tequilas are dropping left and right. But it might also be brilliant — Irish whiskey is a massively expanding style, especially here in the U.S., and hasn’t quite caught on with the celebrity set. There’s a lot of room to grow, less competition, and space for innovation!
So what exactly is the gang’s Irish tipple?
McElhenney, Howerton, and Day actually released two whiskeys under their new Four Walls shingle. The idea behind the brand is to pay homage to the “four walls” of Paddy’s Pub, which they’ve called home for most of their adult lives. The name is a thank you to the place but also to the fans who helped make It’s Always Sunny the massive success it is today. One of the expressions is a blended Irish whiskey and Pennsylvania rye — meant to be enjoyed at a bar, likely with a Coors Light beer back. The other pour is a $1,000 single barrel (technically a “barrel pick”), one which the trio of movie stars might crack open themselves on a special occasion.
Read below for our full review!
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Four Walls Bartender’s Blend Limited Edition
Average Price: Sold Out ($89)
This whiskey is a blend of Ireland and America. The juice is mostly sourced from five-year-old blended Irish grain whiskey and pot still whiskey (that’s Irish whiskey made with unmalted and malted barley). That whiskey is just touched with Pennsylvania rye from Wigle, also aged five years. The final blend is then proofed down and bottled as-is.
This whiskey feels very familiar in a good way on the nose with a hint of an apple tree and tart apple skins next to floral honey with a thin line of clove and anise spice lurking under that fresh sweetness. The palate leans into the spiced honey as a hint of pear leads to more orchard vibes with a soft warmth on the mid-palate. The end arrives with a hint of dry straw with sultanas, fresh honey, and spiced apple fritters — think cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove — rounding out the sip on the soft end with a faint whisper of dried black cherry tobacco underneath it all.
The whiskey comes in a green box with a very classic logo that’s pretty minimal. The bottle inside also feels like a stone-cold classic. The label is bold and eye-catching with “Four Walls” almost jumping off the bottle.
This is a pretty good Irish-American whiskey. I feel like it really shines in simple whiskey cocktails, like a Manhattan or old fashioned. That said, pour this over some rocks and go to town. It’s very solid.
89/100 — Solid B+. We’re not talking about anything mind-blowing here. This is a solid “gather around a table with friends and chat and drink” whiskey.
Cask Strength Four Walls Irish Whiskey “The Better Brown” Single Barrel Aged 15 Years — Taste 8
Average Price: $999
This whiskey is bottled from one ex-bourbon barrel of 15-year-old Irish whiskey. The single malt whiskey was chosen to celebrate the 15 years Sunny has been on the air. After a few select single barrels were chosen, the juice was bottled at cask strength and yielded only 755 bottles.
The nose opens with a hint of rose next to sticky toffee pudding made with plenty of cinnamon and nutmeg and black-tea-soaked dates with a hint of marzipan, rum-soaked raisins, apple skins, and thick and dark Nutella rounding things out. The palate opens with a burst of floral honey-soaked apple chips with rich and creamy vanilla sauce with a dash of poppy seed next to Christmas cake just dashed with bright brandy and full of nuts and candied fruit. The mid-palate leans into the warmth of the wintry spices as creamy vanilla and soft spiced nut cake leans toward a finish full of old soft leather gloves, a dusting of dark cacao powder, and a whisper of dry menthol tobacco in an old pine box.
The box on this one is a nice wooden presentation piece. There’s a proper metal plaque on the inside with a message of deep appreciation from the Gang to whoever is lucky enough to sip this whiskey.
The bottle feels like a throwback to the art deco years of bottles before Prohibition set in. It’s just classic all around. This is definitely not a bottle you’d find in a dive like Paddy’s.
This was excellent neat. A single rock took it to the next level and revealed creamier dark chocolate, a touch of cherry, lush vanilla, and woodier spices.
This is spendy but it is good. $1,000 good? That’s for you to decide. If you’re a lifelong fan of the show (like me) and a whiskey collector (also like me), then that decision will be a lot easier to make.
97/100 — This is one of the better Irish whiskeys I’ve had in a long while. It’s right up there with Teeling 32 and Bushmills 29 Old Rare Cask.