Looking to experience the vistas of Ireland along with its landscape of world famous whiskeys?
With a simple tasting or more extensive journey, you can get an unforgettable grasp on the flavors, history and process of Irish whiskey — for both blended and single malts. Irish whiskeys are generally rather smooth, as they are triple distilled — a different process than used for Scottish whisky.
Through guided tours or a self-created route, you can visit pubs and distilleries who will invite you in and share their latest creations.
Irish Whiskey tasting is a perfect event or side trip for destination wedding guests and couples. Partaking in such a unique experience will be memorable — and delicious!
Enjoy the styles, tastes, and personalities embedded in the Irish Whiskey world through whiskey tastings and samplings in any part of the country.
Where to go
Irish Whiskey distilleries can be found in large cities like Dublin, Limerick, and Cork, or in smaller places like Skibereen, Kilbeggan, and Bushmills.
Most all distilleries accommodate group tours providing a close look at the whiskey making process — and of course delighting you with samples. You can also stop in for a simple taste of their best whiskey.
In addition, many Irish pubs and hotel bars provide informal whiskey tasting. Staff may not have formal whiskey training, but are generally happy to share what they know. Occasionally they’ll be a staff member who has a bit more knowledge and can share details.
Before stopping in to a distillery or pub, call ahead to ensure someone is available to show you around and offer information about their whiskeys.
Top pubs and bars
What to do
Several Irish whiskey tasting options are available to meet your style and match your group.
Guided tours (and tastings)
At most distilleries and distillery museums, you can arrange a guided tour, during which a whiskey expert will provide explanations of:
- The history and creation of the first Irish whiskeys
- The distillery and its history
- Processes and operations
- Details of the maturation process
- Whiskey basics and secrets
- Expert recommendations
- Differences in color, flavor, and scent
- How to become a whiskey master
After the tour, you’ll of course sample various types of whiskey, learning about each one — giving you time to soak in your Irish whiskey experience.
Group sizes and prices range by distillery.
Similar to a guided tour, you can arrange a guided tasting. An expert will share details about the attributes, flavors, and maturation time of various whiskeys — all while you’re savoring their finest whiskey selection.
Guided tastings can be arranged for individuals, pairs, or groups.
Both tours and tastings are often fun, laid back, and give you an opportunity to learn more about the secrets that go into Ireland’s famous whiskeys.
Irish Whiskey Trail
If you’d like to tour and taste at many distilleries and pubs, it may be best to consider the Irish Whiskey Trail which is a free touring guide service through Ireland’s whiskey pubs, bars, museums, and distilleries. With the Irish Whiskey Trail, you can easily incorporate a number of bars and distilleries into your itinerary.
You can discover and appreciate a wide range of whiskeys in various atmospheres — meeting exciting and interesting people along the way.
Irish Whiskey Tasting Event
The Irish Whiskey Tasting Event also offers interesting and in-depth tastings that shine light on fascinating facts, history and special insider tips — like how to make the best Irish coffee. Check here for their current listings.
Pubs and bars
If you’re looking for something more informal, simply visit pubs and bars at your leisure to experience the local vibe and taste whiskeys along your journey. While not all pubs and bars have formally trained whiskey experts, the staff is usually more than happy to explain everything they know.
You can call ahead to bars and pubs or stop on in without advance notice. The locals will enjoy sharing their beloved whiskeys with you!
When to go
The great thing about Irish whiskey tasting is that it’s available all year round. Whiskey season is every season in Ireland!
Be sure to check with distilleries and pubs for their holiday and holiday weekend hours.
Discovering and sampling Irish whiskeys is only part of the treasure. With Irish whiskey tasting, you’ll get an inside look at Irish culture, history, and meet some fascinating people on your journey.