With a roaring number of distilleries being launched, and 16 already operating in and around the city, Dublin will presumably be the next whiskey capital. The Pearse Lyons Distillery in the former St. James’s Church, which has been standing at the site since the 12th century, is almost ready for inauguration. Reports reveal bigger plans in the pipeline, of launching 14 more.
St James’s Church was purchased with a staggering €690,000 by Pearse Lyons and wife, Deirdre. The couple has spent close to €10.5 million on refurbishments till date, which has been going on for a good three years.
Deirdre Lyons stated that soon after the purchase, the church was declared as a national monument which required the involvement of conservation architects for refurbishing the site. The roof trusses had to be changed owing to the accumulation of dry rot. This alone was an expense, worth, €1.3 million. Limestone pillars were also found to be blemished which had to be replaced with stone ordered from France. Another mind-boggling expense was due to the employment of archaeologists as ancient remains were discovered during the renovation.
The Pearse Lyons Distillery will be producing close to 1,000 liters of whiskey in a week once functional, and the destination is expected to fetch around 75,000 visitors. The next launch will be on Mill Street, the Dublin Liberties Distillery, where the ancient tanner and mill is going through enhancements currently. It is being nurtured to become a stunning whiskey destination. The main appeal will center on the old-school distillation methods. Involving a €15 million investment, the distillery will be home to quite a few prevailing brands. The release date is planned to be in 2018, spring.
Teeling Distillery, built 125 years ago, is Dublin’s the first ever distillery. The site experienced a staggering 60,000 visitors in the first year itself. Another old distillery, Jameson, in Smithfield, has also been a noteworthy visitor’s attraction. It recently re-opened post a closure for six months during which renovation worth €11 million was done. The site witnessed an astonishing 300,000 visitors in the year before closure. The Irish Whiskey Association Tourism Strategy predicts that Ireland will witness no less than 1.9 million visitors to its various distilleries by 2025.