Tuesday, August 04, 2015


The Great Northern Distillery has announced that it has begun to distil in the first of two distilleries built on the former Harp Brewery site in Dundalk, Co. Louth.

Following a €10 million investment, a 30 million bottle a year capacity three-column still grain whiskey distillery is now producing new spirit, which will be casked in oak barrels and matured in bonded warehouses for at least three years before it can be called Irish whiskey. 

The Great Northern Distillery

A sister distillery on the site which will have three large copper pots capable of distilling 12 million bottles a year of single malt and pot still whiskey, is being commissioned and will begin distillation by the end of the month. 

Owned by the Teeling family and two former directors of Cooley Distillery, Jim Finn and David Hynes, The Great Northern Distillery will supply a range of whiskies to the new wave of Irish distilleries coming on stream and to the Retail Own Label and Private Label markets worldwide. 

Commenting on the news, John Teeling, Co-Founder of The Great Northern Distillery, said: “It is 95 years since the last whiskey stills went dark in Dundalk, where the Dundalk Distillery had operated since 1800.  It is 120 years since brewing started on what is now the Great Northern Distillery site.  Dundalk is a good town for business.  Good local skills, a good tradition of engineering, a pro-business council all combined with a strong project management team and a top class distiller.  We are reviving the whiskey tradition and continuing alcohol production on what is a wonderful site.  With fair winds, distillation will continue on the GND site for the next 100 years."

When the Great Northern Distillery founders set up Cooley Distillery in 1987, it was the first new Irish whiskey distillery in 100 years.  Now Irish whiskey is the fastest growing brown spirit in the world, with sales expected to double to 250 million bottles a year by 2024.

Posted by Steve Rush