Say ‘sláinte’ in Slane
Known for its turreted castle and legendary live concerts, Slane in Meath is now also a spot for sampling some fine amber nectar. The 250-year-old stable block on the Slane Castle estate has a new purpose as the home of Slane Distillery. Take a tour to learn not only about the whiskey, but also the history of the family and the local area. It is possible to combine a tour of the distillery with a tour of the Castle itself, making the most of a visit to the Boyne Valley. You can also enjoy your Slane Whiskey alongside some delicious food at Bellinter House Hotel in nearby Navan.
Feel regal at the Royal Oak
At the edge of Bagenalstown, County Carlow, set in the grounds of a stately home (circa 1755), you will find one of Ireland's most unique distilleries: Royal Oak. Hand-crafted whiskey is the order of the day, with three types — pot still, malt and single grain — all created in the same still room. Enjoy a stroll around the grounds and check out the ongoing renovation of the estate’s centerpiece, Holloden House, before or after your fully guided, multi-sensory tour. While you’re in the area, just up the road in Leighlinbridge you can pop into The Lord Bagenal Inn for a casual bite at the bar or a meal in the restaurant.
Go back to basics at Ballykeefe
One of the only distilleries to be based on the farm where they grow their own ingredients, Ballykeefe Distillery near the Medieval City of Kilkenny is a treat for those who enjoy eco-friendly spirits. They not only also produce whiskey, but also vodka, gin and a cheeky little poitín too! Seeing as you’re in the neighbourhood, don’t miss the opportunity to experience the Marble City’s many drinking and dining options: first stop, the Dylan Whisky Bar for ‘Kilkenny’s best Irish coffee’.