The spirits industry can be fickle as trends come and go quickly. Several years ago there was a huge vodka phase which was followed by a trendy high-end rum phase. Right now, Gin is the belle of the ball, but whiskey is beginning to really take off in a way that hasn't happened in a very... very long time.
Could Irish Whiskey finally be claiming its rightful place on the world stage? Back in 1897 Dublin was the distillery capital of the world, the four largest distilleries put out a combined total of 11 million litres. From that point on it all went pear-shaped and our Scottish cousins cleverly out-manoeuvred us by supplying a thirsty USA during prohibition. Irish whiskey has played catch up since.
Until 2013 there were just four operating distilleries in Ireland, all owned by large international corporations: Kilbeggan, Cooley, Bushmills and Midleton
But now Irish whiskey is experiencing double-digit growth and new distilleries are popping up to meet this demand - Dingle Distillery, Echlinville Distillery, Teeling Whiskey Company, Great Northern Distillery, Portaferry Distillery, Tullamore Dew Distillery, Slane Castle Distillery, Belfast Distillery, Walsh Whiskey Distillery and Boann Distillery.
These guys have seen a global demand for quality Irish whiskey and they're in it for the long haul. Exciting times indeed.