The Jameson Whiskey Story
In 1780, John Jameson established a way of making Irish whiskey that we’ve been proudly sticking to ever since.
As you can imagine, producing a blended Irish whiskey that has been enjoyed for over two centuries, takes a lot. But don’t worry, we’ve distilled over 200 years of courage, craft and a collective appreciation for taste, into one short account. So here’s the secret behind our signature smoothness – our process and our people.
Our family motto, Sine Metu
Following this family motto ever since has allowed us to produce whiskey through two world wars, an Irish civil war and even American prohibition. It’s also helped us discover new possibilities, new people and new ways of producing whiskey. The Jameson family motto means so much to us, that we proudly display it on the front of every bottle. Which is a handy way to ensure we never stray from it.
Following this family motto ever since has allowed us to produce whiskey through two world wars, an Irish civil war and even American prohibition. It’s also helped us discover new possibilities, new people and new ways of producing whiskey/ The Jameson family motto means so much to us, that we proudly display it on the front of every bottle. Which is a handy way to ensure we never stray from it.
Jameson Irish Whiskey is made by blending rich pot still whiskey made from both malted and unmalted barley, with the finest grain whiskey, both distilled 3 times for smoothness.
And while our barley is all grown within 100 miles of Midleton, our water comes from the Dungourney river, which flows right through our distillery. Which is fitting, because the word whiskey derives from the Irish “uisce beatha”, meaning ‘water of life’. Now, while our barley comes from up the road and our water comes from outside the window, maize is a sun-loving crop. Ireland’s famous climate is anything but tropical, so that’s why we use a farmer in the South of France to provide us with all our non-genetically modified maize.
Good things come in threes
Forget lucky number seven, our smoothness comes from our signature triple distillation process. It’s the method our founder John Jameson built his name on and the legacy our Head Distiller Brian Nation upholds to this day.
Inquisitive minds might be reading this wondering if quadruple distillation would be a step better. Well, we did some experimenting in our early years and the less said about that the better. No, three is our magic number and we’re sticking with it.
While Jameson is Irish through and through, our Head Cooper Ger Buckley turns to our friends in the United States and Spain to provide our casks.
Their previous life ageing bourbon and fortified wine, leaves them seasoned and ready to pass some of their toasted wood, vanilla and sweet sherry personality along to our whiskey.
So what allows Irish Whiskey to call itself Irish Whiskey?
Well, a pretty stringent law that states that a spirit must spend a minimum of three years maturing on the island of Ireland, to be lucky enough to be able to call itself Irish.
Although the length of time our Head of Maturation Kevin O’Gorman allows isn’t the same for every cask, 2% of our whiskey is lost to evaporation every year. This is called the Angel’s Share and after more than 230 years, we reckon it’s their round.
Grain to glass
At Jameson, we are proud to run a single distillery, which means we have full control over the production process, from grain to glass.
When it comes time for blending, Head Blender Billy Leighton only uses whiskeys that were reared on the grounds of our distillery. As a result, we’re able to produce a wide variety of different whiskeys, without having to knock on any other distillery doors. Many celebrated brands blend whiskey from multiple distilleries, so we’re not suggesting our way is superior, it’s just the way we like to do it.
We’d love to show you more
Now that we’ve sufficiently whetted your appetite, we’d love to welcome you to either the Jameson Distillery Bow St. or the Jameson Distillery Midleton to show you more. Tickets, further information and everything you need to plan your trip, is available below.