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Dublin: 3°C Thursday 21 January 2021

9 stops around Ireland to visit for the ultimate whiskey tour

The best tasting locations from the bustle of Stoneybatter to the tip of Dingle.

adam-jaime-119551 Please Drink Responsibly Source: Unsplash

FOND OF THE ODD OLD-FASHIONED? Well, you’re not alone – we’ve been producing whiskey for 15 centuries, and up until the early 1900s, Ireland was the epicentre for supplying the rest of the world with uisce beatha.

In fact, it’s estimated by the Alcohol Beverage Federation of Ireland (ABFI), that in Ireland alone, 6.25 million bottles of whiskey were sold last year, making up only a fraction of the 8.7 million nine-litre cases of Irish whiskey sold around the world.

These days, there are 34 distilleries either currently operating or in planning stages, according to the ABFI. So where better to enjoy the history, taste and culture behind our most famous spirit?

Here’s a roundup of nine perfect places to enjoy a taste of Ireland’s finest tipple.

1. Dick Mack’s, Dingle, Co Kerry

Located in the picture-perfect town of Dingle, Dick Mack’s won the Best Irish Whiskey Bar in Ireland in 2014. Its beautiful dark wood shelves are filled to the brim with whiskey bottles. It’s a pub untouched by time, which operated as a grocery store up until 1938. As a result leather crafting (above) still goes on there, under the watchful eye of a portrait of Charlie Haughey.

2. O’Loclainn’s Irish Whiskey Bar, Ballyvaughan, Co Clare


If it’s a classic, cosy Irish pub that you’re after, this unassuming whiskey bar in Ballyvaughan is what John McKenna of the Bridgestone Food Guide once called “one of our favourite bars anywhere in Ireland”. It’s got a collection of over a hundred bottles, some of which aren’t even in production anymore.

3. Malt Lane Whiskey Bar at Folkhouse, Kinsale, Co Cork

12011130_1117951928232963_8391658369987199891_n Please Drink Responsibly Source: Facebook/Folk House Bar & Bacchus Night Club

Situated in the gorgeous fishing town of Kinsale, Malt Lane was founded almost 275 years ago, is part of the Folkhouse and a member of the Irish Whiskey Trail. It also won the Irish Whiskey Bar of the Year (Munster) at the Irish Whiskey Awards and its 100+ whiskey selection has been skillfully picked out by former chef Conor Ryan.

4. Palace Bar, Fleet Street, Dublin 2


Established nearly 200 years ago, the Palace Bar is one of Dublin’s original Victorian pubs. Its former regulars include the likes of Brendan Behan, Seamus Heaney, Patrick Kavanagh and Flann O’Brien. These days, the old record player on the bar plays jazz and blues and the bar is so famous that it even produces its own whiskey.

5. Idlewild Bar, Fade Street, Dublin 2

18447433_1887999198122927_7362433077584132580_n Source: Facebook/Idlewild Dublin

Located on Fade Street, Idlewild is inspired by New York and its basement was once a brothel in the 1830s. They offer 25 Irish whiskeys alone, many of them particular casks of a well-known whiskey, including a few made only up the road in Dublin 8. Not sure what you want? They also have a cocktail for each day of the week.

6. L Mulligan Grocer, Stoneybatter, Dublin 7

L Mulligan Grocer in Stoneybatter is a beloved spot for both residents from the local neighbourhood and Dubliners from further afield in the county. It’s a treasure trove of brilliant whiskey (matched to their decadent desserts), that serves the tastiest of Irish food. In fact, each item on the menu comes with a delicious drink pairing, and if you really want to take some time out, you can even stay there.

7. Revolution Bar, John St, Waterford

21752550_10155141017072741_3624403508328587719_o Please Drink Responsibly Source: Facebook/Revolution Waterford

A brilliant combination of a rooftop bar, a snug and a choice of 166 whiskeys, Revolution was once considered a hidden gem but has since become a Waterford institution that won the whiskey bar category at the Sky Bar of the Year Awards 2017. They also have 19 Midletons (very rare vintage whiskey), so you will be spoilt for choice in its antique interior.

8. The Beer Market, Merchant’s Quay, Dublin 8

11986567_1146007518745372_501639509007253349_n Source: Facebook/The Beer Market

According to The Beer Market, 90% of the beer on tap isn’t available anywhere else in Ireland – and they have a collection of whiskeys that encompasses every price point from €5 to €50, with one picked out each week as their special. It’s one of the Galway Bay Brewery pubs, which includes Against The Grain and The Gasworks – also both great locations for whiskey.

9. Jameson Distillery, Bow St, Dublin 7

JDBS - BAR Please Drink Responsibly Source: Jameson

The old stomping ground of Irish whiskey icon John Jameson who founded the distillery in 1879, Jameson Distillery Bow St got a €11 million refurbishment last year. Now you can visit his original office with tastings that cater to every whiskey fan – from beginners to aficionados, and take a trip to the maturation house (where it will become clear why premium, aged whiskey comes with a higher price).

Source: Jameson Irish Whiskey/YouTube

Still fascinated by the complex world of whiskey? Jameson have over a hundred years’ experience in the whiskey business and the latest addition to their story is their creation of Jameson Caskmates, which is finished in stout-seasoned whiskey casks. Learn more about the new blend in the original Jameson Distillery Cork or the brand new Jameson Distillery Bow St in Dublin.

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