The barley used in production for all of our Whiskey and Casks is selected & sourced in County Limerick.
It has been 100 years since Limerick had its own whiskey and in memory, we pay homage to the long lost distillery of Thomond Gate which sat on the banks of the River Shannon between 1809 and 1919. The distillery was named after the fortified city gate which in times before the building of John’s Gate in 1494, Thomond Gate was the most important portal in the city. It was the gateway to the western part of the country and was well protected by the Shannon River and King John’s Castle. It linked the counties of both Clare and Limerick. This was known as the Kingdom of Thomond and once ruled over by the High King of Ireland, Brian Boru and Earls of Thomond.
The incoming grains at the distillery are screened and transferred to storage silos. The grains are then wet-milled, exposing the inside of the grain, to form a grist. The grist is then mixed with hot water in the mash and lauter tun to facilitate the starch conversion process which enables the starches to be converted into fermentable sugars (wort).
For malt and pot still spirit batch production, the wash is heated in copper pot stills. The heating causes the alcohol to boil and the alcohol vapours rise up the neck of the still and cooled in the vapour condenser. This process is repeated to produce ‘new fill’ is usually distilled three times in three separate copper pot stills. The Distiller can create different flavour styles of malt and pot still spirit by altering the timing of cuts during the pot still distillation.
The wort is then transferred to the washback’s and yeast is added. The yeast converts the sugar in the wort to alcohol which is known as wash.
The spirit alcohol is reduced in the spirit vats with pure reverse osmosis water prior to casking. The malt and pot still spirit is reduced to customer specifications which has a typical casking ABV of 63%. During the maturation process in a casks the spirit profile changes with both flavour and colour.
To be classed as Irish Whiskey the spirit is required to remain in a casks for a minimum of 3 years however many whiskeys are matured for much longer. GND predominately use selects American white oak (Quercus alba) Bourbon casks which typically have a capacity of 200lt. GND also source a range of other specialist casks including sherry butts, port, rum and wine casks for both maturation and whiskey finishing.