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Sliabh Liag Distillery launches new Legendary Dark Silkie Irish Whiskey

Sliabh Liag Distillers, based in Carrick, County Donegal, has just released The Legendary Dark Silkie Irish Whiskey, a blend of carefully selected Irish Whiskeys which will reintroduce drinkers to the rich smoky peated turf fire Irish Whiskey style of the early 19th century.

James Doherty, founder and managing director of Sliabh Liag Distillers describes the whiskey. “The Dark Silkie is the first addition to our Silkie range and adds a smoky overlay to the signature Silkie style. It has always been my intention to bring peat smoke to blends and this is the first time we have been able to source the right smoky whiskeys for our Silkie. It’s the perfect stepping-stone for introducing the dry, rich, smoky style that we believe is true to Donegal and the wild Atlantic coast.

James describes the tasting notes of the new Dark Silkie as "fresh apple, pipe tobacco and the comforting dry smoke of a peat fire. To taste, the whiskey is super soft with a salted-caramel sweetness, dark chocolate and liquorice, oak, leather, and a dry spicy smoke. The finish is warming with smoky malt, peanut butter and melts away,” he adds.

Dark Silkie has at its core a triple distilled peated single malt which is matured in sherry casks. This single malt is peated to 55 parts per million, which after the triple distillation results in a phenol level around 22 parts per million, giving a rich, sweet, smoky flavour. The peated single malt is blended with a double distilled single malt matured in bourbon barrels and soft grain whiskey matured in virgin oak casks.

As with the multi-award winning Silkie Irish Whiskey, the Dark Silkie is hand bottled at Sliabh Liag Distillers in Carrick, County Donegal and in keeping with the strong tradition of storytelling still prevalent in Donegal, The Dark Silkie is named after the Silkies of the Donegal coast. (Silkies are mythical mermaid-like shape-shifters, who shed their seal skin coats on a sandy moonlit shore to become beautiful sea maidens!)

Last month, Sliabh Liag Distillers joined the national effort in fighting COVID-19 by pivoting production to hand sanitiser, as James explains: “It has been a busy time with the pivot toward hand sanitiser in recent weeks, but in spite of the pandemic, we are pushing ahead with the new distillery build (in Ardara) and will only produce rich peated whiskeys with our "all grains in" process, which I think is unique to Ireland”.

The Legendary Dark Silkie Irish Whiskey has a retail recommended price of €42 and is available online at the Sliabh Liag Distillers online shop,, The Celtic Whiskey Shop, Amazon and Master of Malt.


The Wild Atlantic Way is the world's Longest Coastal Route