Cheshire Cat rolls out the barrel!

The team greatly enjoyed their latest trip to Ireland. After a challenging two and a half years, it was time to get away and enjoy Donegal in the Northern part of the Irish Republic. The highlight of the trip was our journey to the newly created Crolly Distillery. Located in the west Donegal Gaeltacht village of Croithlí, County Donegal, set between the Wild Atlantic Coast and the stunning Errigal mountain, the distillery is a restored historic stone cut building constructed in 1901. The owners want to connect this part of Ireland with the world through their craft whiskeys, double distilled in Donegal’s first functioning licensed whiskey distillery in 180 years.



The day was typically wet and breezy as we arrived at the distillery to fill our barrel with grain spirit, already distilled and waiting for us. As you will see from the photo gallery, a large pump and hose is used to take the distilled grain spirit from the still to the barrel. Cheshire Cat Pubs and Inns, through Tim and Mary, have become ‘founder members’ of the distillery, acquiring barrel number 160 of the 180 that were on offer. The 180 barrels pay homage the 180 years that Donegal has been without its very own distillery. The barrel also commemorates Tim’s big 60th birthday but was filled on 1st October 2021, which means that we have three years and one day until 2nd October 2024 to wait before we can truly say we have our whiskey! Tim started the process of filling the barrel before handing over to Mary and then each member of the team joined in to ensure we could say we all truly took a part in filling the barrel of our very own whiskey.

Tim returned to finish the filling of the barrel and of course like any Yorkshire man made sure it was completely full by allowing it to slightly overflow. Then the bung was hammered in by Tim and the ‘hey presto’ we had our barrel of maturing whiskey.