Ireland’s Boann Distillery has teamed-up with Irish Whiskey historian Fionnán O’Connor to revive a number of vintage Irish Whiskey recipes, some of which are 300 years-old. As part of O’Connor’s PhD thesis, The History and Culinary Potential of Lost Irish Mash Bills, the historian unearthed a collection of mashbills, discovered in archives from Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Boann Distilleries will now recreate the mashbills. Each one will be distilled separately; casked in either Bourbon, Sherry, Rum, or ex-red Wine barrels. Each Whiskey will be aged for five years. The Co Meath distillery will be limiting production to just 144 casks for public consumption.
“The bulk of these mashbills haven’t been tasted in over 70 years and the earliest ones I’ve found come from the early 1800s,” said O’Connor. “It would be a shame if all that history and those flavours were lost. This project has been about making up for lost time.”
Keen to expand on the revival of these ancient recipes, Boann announced that the project will soon include a tasting of the various mashbills by representatives from the Irish Whiskey industry. Among those offering tastings will be researchers from Scotland chosen in association with the brewing and distilling program at Edinburgh’s Heriot-Watt University.
Boann will also offer up samples for consumers to taste, hoping to inspire drinkers to purchase their own Vintage Mash Bill cask.
O’Connor’s 2015 book, A Glass Apart, has been described as the definitive guide to Irish pot still whiskey, and he frequently works with other distilleries on historic mashbills, so it seems as if he’s the perfect partner for Boann Distilleries on this intriguing project.
Boann Distilleries currently releases a variety of Whiskeys, including single malts, single grains, a cask finish series, and it’s Trilogy collection. At the 2021 World Whiskies Awards, the brand scooped up six prizes, including five accolades for the Whistler range – and was also crowned Best Single Pot Still New Make 2021.