Having ancestors from Dingle in County Kerry, I was delighted to hear five years ago that the town had become home to Ireland’s first purpose-built distillery to open in more than 100 years. The three founders – Oliver Hughes, Liam LaHart and Peter Mosley, who set up the Porterhouse Brewing Company in 1996 – filled the first Dingle Whiskey casks in 2012 and released an initial, small quantity three years later.
The start of 2017 saw the emergence of its slightly more widely available Batch No 1; as of Monday November 6, you’ll be able to buy its Batch No 2 Single Malt (£80) and, from Thursday November 30, the distillery’s first pot-still whiskey (£80). Both will be available in decidedly limited quantities, and of the 6,000 bottles of Batch No 2 being distributed, a mere 600 will be available in the UK, while only 600 numbered bottles of the pot-still product will be sold worldwide.
A sneak tasting of the former held last month revealed Batch No 2 to benefit from a unique combination of flavours – salted caramel, dark chocolate, raisins and almonds were variously detected by different palates – with the character of the drink undoubtedly influenced by The Dingle Distillery’s coastal setting and its maturation in both sherry and bourbon casks.
The pot-still whiskey, meanwhile, is even more special, with notes of citrus and spice complemented by an exceptionally rich colour drawn from oloroso sherry casks. Plans are in place to launch the Batch No 3 Single Malt in March.