Ahascragh Distillers are a new Irish Whiskey brand who have already begun work on converting an old mill house in East Galway into a new Irish Whiskey Distillery. I haven’t been down to visit yet, but I have been following with great interest the fascinating restoration journey of the old mill documented in picture on their Ahascragh Spirit Facebook account.

Ahascragh Distillers Galway Clan Colla Uais Irish Whiskey Blogger Stuart McNamara

The founders, Gareth and Michelle McAllister are a husband and wife team from Dublin. Having lived and worked in countries across Europe, the US and Asia, they returned to Ireland with the dream of turning their passion for craft Irish spirits into a family business. They set their sights on opening a whiskey and gin distillery in the West of Ireland and when they visited the old mill in Ahascragh, County Galway, they fell in love with its story: the beautiful stonework, the history of the buildings and the character of the small village.

Ahascragh Distillers Galway Clan Collan Uais Irish Whiskey Blogger Stuart McNamara

Gareth was kind enough to make contact with me a while back to brief me on their plans for the restoration and distillery build. He also had some fascinating insights on the Asian whiskey market based on both founders’ significant experience of working in Asia in their previous business lives.

Ahascragh Distillers Limited was established

“with the purpose of producing authentically crafted Irish spirits to the highest quality of tasting experience with unique and innovative flavours. The company’s mission is to help family and friends celebrate meaningful moments and occasions, strengthening new and old connections”.

While waiting for the first drop of Ahascragh spirit from their own distillery, the company began their whiskey journey with their “Family Bond” series of hand-selected releases, Clan Colla Irish Whiskey, Xin Gin and now, Uais Irish Whiskey. These special releases, although not distilled in Ahascragh, are partly matured, finished, and blended by Gareth and Michelle McAllister and bottled in the village.

Ahascragh Distillers Galway Clan Collan Uais Irish Whiskey Blogger Stuart McNamara

Their initial two Clan Colla releases which I reviewed in July this year on my Instagram account were a 19 Year Old Single Malt which was an 18 Year Old sourced whiskey finished for an extra year in Oloroso Sherry Casks and also an intriguing “grain forward” 11 Year Old Blend finished in both Oloroso and Peated Whiskey Casks. Both were at 46% ABV and following a growing trend of many of today’s leading craft Irish Whiskeys, there is no artificial caramel colouring added.

Ahascragh Distillers Galway Clan Colla Uais Irish Whiskey Blogger Stuart McNamara

As soon as I discovered the incredibly rich nose on the 19, I knew that I would have to reserve some of the small tasting sample for a special occasion and I’m sipping it now as I prepare to write about their next releases.

The latest releases just announced by Ahascragh Distillers are their Uais Irish Whiskey, and a new Clan Colla 20 Year Old expression. 


American Bourbon Barrels and Italian Amarone Casks

Ahascragh Distillers Galway Clan Colla Amarone Cask Finish Uais Irish Whiskey Blogger Stuart McNamara

The newest addition to the Clan Colla Irish Whiskey collection. A single cask release of just 300 bottles at cask strength, 55% ABV, makes this a special expression. This fine 20 Year Old malt was double distilled in 2001. It has been carefully matured for 19 long years in American Bourbon Barrels and finished for one more year in Italian Amarone casks.

According to Ahascragh Distillers,

“Time spent in the Bourbon Barrels lays down flavours that have become the signatures of Irish Whiskey. A perfect harmony of honeycomb, vanilla and caramel. Finishing in the Amarone cask elevates this remarkable whiskey to new heights of texture and flavour. Red fruits, milk chocolate and nutmeg explode on the palate and lead to a lasting, velvet finish.

A cask strength expression of undiluted flavour and hidden depths that can be enjoyed at your preferred strength”.


Ahascragh Distillers Galway Clan Colla Uais Irish Whiskey Blogger Stuart McNamara

Ahascragh Distillers newest whiskey is a unique blend of Pot Still, Single Malt and Grain Whiskeys, aged in Ex-Bourbon and Virgin Oak casks.

This whiskey

“is named for Cairel Colla Uais: one of the famed Three Collas, brothers who once ruled ancient Ireland. Against tradition, Uais overthrew the sitting monarch and ruled as High King for four short but glorious years. A whiskey that honours the past but moves in bold new directions, presenting opportunities for new ideas, new flavours and new traditions”.

Uais is

“a fusion of 25% Pot Still bringing spice, creaminess and body; 25% Malt with notes of toasted nuts, biscuits and dried fruit; and 50% Grain with flavours of honey, fudge and vanilla”.

I’m particularly looking forward to trying the twenty year old to see what further heights an extra year and the softer sweeter Amarone Cask Finish lift this already great whiskey to.

Clan Colla Cask Strength Single Malt 20 Year Old and Uais Irish Whiskey are available to pre-order now at Celtic Whiskey Shop.

Visit AhascraghDistillery.com for more information.

Whiskey Blogger
Whiskey Blogger

Stuart McNamara (@WhiskeyBlogger) is an international Whiskey Blogger who edits several International Whisk(e)y and Whiskey Tourism sites including IrishWhiskey.com and WhiskeyBlogger.com. He is Chair of the Irish Craft And Artisan Distilleries Association (ICADA) and is an elected member of the National Council of ISME, the Irish SME Association. He is also the creator and editor of International Irish Whiskey Day which is celebrated on 3/3 or 3rd March each year and had a global social media reach in 2021 of over 20 Million. He is a Director of Portmagee Whiskey and has also acted as both a brand and product development consultant to several other Irish Whiskey and other spirits producers.

International Whiskey Reviews by Irish Whiskey Blogger Stuart McNamara