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Vintage mashbills to be showcased at major whiskey festival


A distillery’s project to resurrect Irish whiskey recipes lost for up to 200 years, is to be showcased at a major festival celebrating the spirit.

The full story behind the famous vintage mashbills (recipes) produced by Boann Distillery, will finally be told at a virtual tasting during Belfast Whiskey Week on July 30.

And the Co Meath-based, family-run firm is now giving whiskey lovers the chance to buy rare samples of the Single Pot Still new make spirit – distilled using recipes dating back up to two centuries.

The mashbills were discovered during groundbreaking research into the annals of Irish Whiskey by leading whiskey historian, author and PhD student, Fionnán O’Connor, as part of his thesis with Technological University Dublin (TUD).

Fionnan O'Connor

Fionnan O’Connor


Boann, based outside Drogheda, distilled and casked the vintage mashbills in December 2020 and released 144 casks for sale earlier this year – all of which were snapped up in weeks.


The remaining spirit has been used to create 500 limited edition packs containing ten 50ml bottles, each containing a different new make distillate and likely to become a collectors’ item among serious whiskey enthusiasts.

“It has been a great honour to be part of the team that curated the Boann Distillery vintage mashbill tasting pack,”

said distillery co-founder, Peter Cooney.

“This is an amazing and unique piece of work into the history of the distillation of Irish Single Pot Still Spirit over the last 200 years.


“This project has changed the course of Single Pot Still distillation in Ireland.


“Each mashbill is accompanied by full tasting notes and mashbill breakdown, with a full historic background of the era in which the mashbill was in use, as well as the grains used in each one.


“In association with Belfast Whiskey Week – now the biggest dedicated whiskey forum in Europe –  we will be tasting, commenting and telling the story of these vintage mashbills with Fionnán O’Connor and Michael Walsh, Head Distiller, Boann Distillery.


“It takes place on July 30 (6pm) as a part of, and in association with, Belfast Whiskey Week and promises to be an entertaining and informative event.”


Anyone who buys one of the vintage mashbill packs (€135) from www.boanndistillery.ie can attend the event virtually.

The link will be e-mailed directly by Belfast Whiskey Week to each purchaser.

Separately, the vintage mashbills academic project has also culminated in a gathering of 30 of the leading lights in the Irish distilling industry and international whiskey world for an industry blind sensory analysis of the various mashbills and their ranking over different criteria, in both Belfast and Dublin.


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