It was a busy day at Clonakilty Distillery last Wednesday, when Yiorgos Manesis and Paul Walsh, from James Fox Cigar and Whiskey Store, came to visit for their Cask Keeper Club ‘Filling Day’.
James Fox is one of Ireland’s leading merchants of fine Cuban cigars and premium Irish whiskey, since 1881. Like Clonakilty Distillery, their heritage and family business ethos is extremely important to them. Perhaps that’s why they choose Clonakilty Distillery as their first cask purchase.
The day started with a tour of the new €10 million Distillery and Visitor Centre, and in the afternoon, everyone took a short trip to the nearby Scully family farm and barley fields at the foot of Galley Head Lighthouse. There, it is possible to see strains of barley which have not been grown in Ireland for over a hundred years. Next, the group moved on to the distillery’s Atlantic Ocean warehouse, which is situated 200 feet above the sea. This private behind the scene tour, is a privilege enjoyed only by Cask Keeper Club members.
The cask filling at the warehouse was the highlight of the day. After a brief tour of the sea-swept facility, where everything from maturing casks to bottling and labeling is carried out, it was time to gather and fill the cask. Hammer in hand, Yiorgos sealed the fate of his own uisce beatha— and it was goodbye for 5 years. Or maybe 10, if he is feeling adventurous. Who knows, we’ll have to wait and see.
We were impressed with the whole operation but most of all with the passion you guys have for your product. It was great to visit the farm and warehouse and we are very excited to have a cask lying in wait there.
Yiorgos Manesis, Managing Director, James Fox