Silkie And Dark Silkie Irish Whiskeys Head To American Shores

By Nino Kilgore-Marchetti / September 10, 2020

The American liquor retail market of late has become awash with a number of Irish whiskey labels looking to push into overseas environments. This explosion in part has to do with the fact there’s just a lot more activity going on in Ireland now in terms of whiskey sourcing and production, so it makes sense that those which can get footholds in new nations will attempt to do so. One of the latest is Sliabh Liag Distillers with its Silkie And Dark Silkie offerings.

Sliabh Liag Distillers, as we covered not too long ago, is located on Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way in Donegal. They have the expressed goal of reclaiming “the distilling heritage of Donegal, by producing premium brands that are deeply rooted in the rich history and folklore of the breath-taking Donegal Coast.” The area they are located in has not seen legal whiskey operations in over 200 years since the last operation there, Burt Distillery, shut down.

Legendary Dark Silkie Irish Whiskey

Legendary Dark Silkie Irish Whiskey (image via Sliabh Liag Distillers)

Their first offering, The Silkie Irish Whiskey, is a blended expression they first debuted in 2016. More recently they also debuted The Legendary Dark Silkie Irish Whiskey, a blend of double distilled single malt and triple distilled peated single malt with soft grain whiskey that’s said to capture “the sweet smoky flavours of the whiskeys produced in Donegal in years gone by.” 

“While Burt Distillery ceased production in 1841,” said Sliabh Liag Distillers co-founder James Doherty in a prepared statement, “we know illicit distilling continued during the intervening years, not least by my grandfather who was creating a smoky, double distilled spirit under the authorities’ radar on the hills of Kilcar.

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“I think my grandfather would approve that we are now distilling innovative, award-winning spirits and shipping them to the US for our American friends to enjoy.”

Official tasting notes for these whiskeys indicate that “Silkie Irish Whiskey has been blended to be exceptionally soft, with a fresh, yet rich character and elegant finish with notes of green apple, orange zest and stem ginger. Dark Silkie Irish Whiskey has at its core a peated, triple distilled single malt, giving hints of salted caramel, dark chocolate, oak and pipe tobacco finishing with a leathery, spicy smoke.

“Both whiskeys are bottled at 46% ABV (92 proof) and are non-chill filtered.”


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