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Gaelic for “water of life”, Whiskey has been produced since the 7th century and at the height of its popularity in the 18th century, there were over 1000 distilleries on the island. Ireland also has the privilege of being home to the oldest surviving whiskey distillery in the world – Bushmills.
The Old Bushmills Distillery
One of the world’s oldest licensed whiskey distilleries, as it recently celebrated 400 years of local distilling. Located in the town of Bushmills on the stunning Antrim coast, whiskey-making tradition is still very popular today. Take a guided tour and sample the produce of Bushmills.
The Jameson Distillery
Located in Smithfield, North City Dublin, the distillery no longer brews here but you can take a tour deep within the restored 17th century building and sample the taste of Jameson’s Irish Whiskey. From the time it arrives at the barley stage, to malting and milling, mashing and fermenting and from distilling to maturing, you will learn of ‘The Jameson’s Irish Whiskey Story’.
Lockes Distillery Museum
Established in 1757 and located in Kilbeggan, County Westmeath, whiskey production continued for 200 years until 1957. Lockes Distillery is believed to be the oldest ‘Pot Still Distillery’ in the world and in 1982 the locals started restoring the old distillery to a Museum.
Old Midleton Distillery
The Jameson Heritage Centre in Midleton Co. Cork, offers visitors the chance to see the largest ‘Pot Still’ in operation with a capacity of 32,000 gallons. The Old Waterwheel manufactured in 1825 to provide power is still functioning. Each visit culminates in the Jameson Bar with the Irish Whiskey tasting session where you may have the opportunity of becoming a qualified Irish Whiskey Taster.
Situated on the Cooley Peninsula north of Dublin near the town of Dundalk, the distillery was founded in 1987. Soon after, Cooley Distillery bought the right to use two dormant whiskey brands; the Kilbeggan and Locke’s as well as bringing other brands back to their former glory.