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Glendalough Whiskey

Glendalough Poitín Irish Whiskey

Glendalough Distillery is a small distillery located south of Dublin, in the mountains on the way to Glendalough. The distillery is run by a small group of local people from Wicklow and Dublin with a deep passion for reviving the heritage of the old Irish craft. In the 18th and 19th centuries, there were 2,000 licensed distilleries in Ireland (and countless unlicensed) producing various styles of Poitín, Whiskey, Gin, and even Absinthe. Recently, the number dropped to a small handful, with 3 major multinational companies at the forefront, none of them Irish. The people behind Glendalough felt that the soul had slipped out of the proud distillation tradition in Ireland and it could not be allowed at the birthplace of distilled beverages.

Everyone had worked in and around the beverage industry but wanted to create their own style and establish something meaningful. Which meant that they could produce innovative spirits while remaining true to the tradition and legacy of their ancestors. Where the Glendalough Distillery story starts is exactly where it should start - with the world's first alcohol, the original Irish alcohol, Poitín. Carefully crafted using recipes and methods handed down over generations, the Glendalough Poitín series is just the first step on an exciting journey starting from a small distillery in the Wicklow Mountains.

The Glendalough brand

The Glendalough area ("Glen of Two Lakes") is a glacial valley south of Dublin, in the scenic CountyWicklow, "The Garden of Ireland". It is one of the most visited places in Ireland, with over one million visitors each year (Ireland has 4 million inhabitants). The place is known for its natural beauty and its monastery, founded in the 6th century by St. Kevin, a legendary monk.

St. Kevin

Throughout the history of St. Kevin, Glendalough personified the brand's attitude and personality. St. Kevin had the courage of his opinion, which attracted people to that extent. Although he was born into Irish nobility, it did not stop him from breaking out on his own and eagerly following his own path. He was a true leader, with an unshakable, strength of character building a civilization in an isolated valley. Especially the story of Kevin and the sun variety is the most important in the brand's meaning.

The blackbird

Kevin was so enamored with nature that one day a sunbeam landed on his hand as he stood in his beautiful valley praying with his arms up - it was tougher that way and he liked to do things the hard way . The sunflower felt safe, and laid 3 small, blue-green eggs. Kevin stood day and night, not moving, until the eggs hatched and the kids were ready to fly.

What that means for Glendalough

This strength is reflected in Glendalough. An independent Irish spirits brand. Things are done the right way, even the reverse is the hard way. You do what it takes to bring Ireland's proud distillation legacy back to its rightful place in the world. Like St. Kevin, dare they stand out, to go their own way. Not through blind stubbornness, or to get attention, but solely to create his own style. Being, the unique, independent spirit, with an unshakable character strength that people are drawn to, just like with St. Kevin

Poitin

Poitín {potcheen}, is the world's first distilled beverage. The earliest records date back to the year 584. Irish whiskey is a direct descendant. In fact, all whiskey and all distilled beverages can be traced back to Poitín manufacture in Ireland 14 centuries ago.

It was first made with excellence and reverence in monasteries, such as Glendalough, by Irish monks who were the master distillers of their time. Poitín manufacturing flourished throughout Ireland over the next thousand years. Kings sent envoys to retrieve the famous "Uisce beatha" (water of life). When distillation later became a knowledge also outside the monasteries, Poitín's production gave the poor, oppressed Irish subclass a bit of independence to wealthy landlords and the British throne.

Poitín manufacture was banned on Christmas Day in 1661 by King Charles II. Insurgent Irish distillers went underground and continued to hone their craft.

The quality of their work meant that Poitín sold better than Irish Whiskey until well into the 19th century. It was now an illegal craft, hidden in remote valleys. Poitín was immersed in all areas of Irish culture, from legends and folklore, to music and songs. Anyone with respect for themselves, has a bottle somewhere, to cure ills, celebrate special occasions and grease wheels. Poitín's production was banned until 1997, when it was legalized again. Glendalough announces a renaissance for the ancient art of making Poitín, and aims to bring it back to its rightful place of summer-masterfully crafted spirits with a long and unique history.