New €10m distillery in Cork expects 35,000 visitors annually

Company in Clonakilty to be led by Cork farmer-turned-developer Michael Scully

A new €10 million distillery in Clonakilty, west Cork, has created 35 jobs, and is expected to attract 35,000 visitors annually, according to its backers.

Clonakilty Distillery is the latest in a long list of such facilities to set up in the Republic in recent years. In 2018, Irish whiskey distilleries and visitor centres welcomed more than 923,000 visitors, which was up 13 per cent from the previous year.

As well as the visitor experience, gin school and the Whale's Tail Bistro, Clonakilty Distillery also has a warehouse on the Wild Atlantic Way out on the Galley Head peninsula.The company will be headed up by Cork farmer-turned-developer Michael Scully.

In addition to a triple-distilled single pot still whiskey produced from grain grown on the Scully family farm, the distillery will also produce Minke Gin, derived from locally-produced whey and infused with a hand-foraged coastal botanical called rock samphire.


“We’re thrilled that the big day has finally arrived, and we can welcome visitors to the distillery,” said Mr Scully on Monday. “This project is a statement of confidence for the area and a declaration of support for the town.

“Construction work began 15 months ago, and we’re happy to say that whenever possible we used the skills of local people across west Cork to deliver the project. Now the hard work begins of making the Clonakilty brand a global leader.”

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson

Colin Gleeson is an Irish Times reporter