The Top Ten Things You Need to Know If You are Only Launching An Irish Whiskey Brand Today.

So, you’ve decided to become a billionaire by launching an Irish Whiskey Company, awesome, welcome to the Billionaire club.  Here is some advice from your friends in whiskey many of us who jumped on this particular bandwagon several years ago and are riding it all the way to Money town, just like you……

  1. You can’t get away with lying about a non existent distillery/distiller/ master blender anymore. Hyde screwed the pooch on this one a few years ago, and people actually stand up and take notice now and won’t tolerate it. You need to be open about what you are doing and not obfuscate the truth.
  2. You should not lie anyway, its in the bible, and its REALLY BAD for the Irish Whiskey category and all the rest of us if you are not 100% transparent about your approach to making whiskey. Consumers are not stupid and the more liars that come out in Irish Whiskey the worse it is for the rest of us.
  3. People won’t believe any old stuff about your water source or your amazing mind bending distillation techniques. Everyone knows that you are contract distilling at one of like 4 places in Ireland, just like the rest of us.
  4. Please don’t make films in the Nuns Island bonded warehouse, its really obvious.  Most people have their liquid there or at Stafford’s, its not a unique thing and its not your bonded warehouse so you can’t call yourself a Bonder either.
  5. Do read a few books about whiskey and learn about it, its easy to tell when people in the industry don’t understand much about the category. Hint, whiskey is not described as SMOOTH by and large…..
  6. Don’t say the 80% of whiskies flavour thing….I am personally guilty of that myself and I sort of regret it, its too debatable. Also don’t just throw in all the buzzwords, like Terrior, Bonding, hoping something will stick…..It’s too scattergun.
  7. Do realize that the whole CRAFT thing is dead. The term was so overused in the past 5 years that its meaningless now. If you have to shout craft all the time, it means you aint.
  8. Know that the engaged whiskeyphiles on social media will analyse and discuss what you are doing. They do not suffer fools lightly and their discussions are powerful and global in the whiskey media.
  9. Understand that being an Independent Bottler is actually an awesome brand position. Nobody in Irish Whiskey has claimed it yet, its well established in Scotland and if your blends are actually good, you can really blaze a trail.
  10. If you don’t love and want to protect this category for the future, you should not be entering it. We don’t need brands who are going to tarnish the reputation of our industry. We (the collective Indie Brands) are trying to build up the reputation of Independent Irish Whiskey through qualitative  blends and bottlings and authentic stories.  Don’t ruin it for the rest of us.