But what other opportunities are available to whiskey makers whilst the “uisce beatha” is maturing?
More recently developed distilleries are recognising the value of the visitor centre as an additional income stream and marketing platform for the end product. Ireland’s visitors are intrigued to ‘experience’ our national whiskeys and will pay for the privilege of observing the distilling process followed by a tasting in-situ.
Alongside the functioning stills, modern developers of distilleries are putting in place visitor’s shops, tours, restaurants and bars.
A full service bar also allows a distillery the option of operating as a unique venue for events.
To do this, a distillery requires two liquor licences – (a) a manufacturer’s licence and (b) a seven day publican’s on-licence.
The manufacturer’s licence is required to produce the alcohol. The publican’s licence to provide more than a ‘tasting’ of alcohol on site.
The traditional model of a resturant, pub and distillery is changing all the time – be sure your development is reaching its full potential and providing all possible revenue streams.
In 2013, there were only four distilleries operating in Ireland, now there are 16 distilleries in production and a further 14 in planning