Bye bye botanicals, hello rye
Forget mixing botanicals and choosing right artisan gin to go with your flavoured tonic water, whiskey is set to be the hottest drink of 2019. With the number of women under the age of 30 opting for a single malt as their tipple of choice rising rapidly.
You could blame the much-lauded Mad Men effect, as the cult show was held accountable for a rise in whiskey sales back in 2011, but almost a decade later why are sales still rising? Some experts put it down to the fact that NAS whiskies have improved so much. Whiskey is notoriously expensive to produce, allowing batches to mature for years in barrels has been prohibitive for some producers. But the resurgence in NAS whiskies (no-age-statement whiskies) allows smaller artisan producers to operate at a different level.
In fact, whiskey is growing so much, that there are now 21 distilleries in Ireland and Irish whiskey shows no sign of slowing down as one of Dublin's best-known distilleries scooped the award of Europe's Leading Distillery Tour 2018.
Yes, Smithfield's Jameson Distillery took home the top spot, beating fellow Irish nominees Teelings Distillery, Bushmills and Tullamore Dew.
But what if you're not a hardened whiskey drinker? Don't worry, like everything there's a way to ease yourself and acclimatise the palette, as Kevin Hurley of The Devlin in Ranelagh says 2019 will be the year of the Irish coffee.
Which, brings us to the good news. Did you know there's a whiskey museum in Dublin? Yup! And you can do a tour while drinking whiskey with prices starting from just €20.
The Whiskey Blending Experience at the Irish Whiskey Museum, which is located right next to Trinity College, is an extended 1 hour and 30-minute experience and brings whiskey to the masses.
This fully guided tour through the museum will be followed by a tasting of four Irish whiskeys before visitors get the chance to blend their own miniature (30ml) personalized bottle of whiskey to take home as a souvenir.
There are worse ways to pass the time!
Whiskey Blending @ The Irish Whiskey Museum costs €26 and you can book here