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An Dúlamán - Bringing the Magic of the Sea to You for World Gin Day

In a week that begins with World Ocean Day and ends with World Gin Day (this Saturday 13th June 2020) you could treat yourself to one of the world's most unique gins, An Dúlamán Irish Maritime Gin, which is flavoured with five locally harvested seaweed and six other botanicals!

Sliabh Liag Distillers' Gin Distiller, Moira Doherty, has created a spirit as unique as the rugged Donegal coast that inspires it - An Dúlamán. It is produced in a custom built 500 litre hand-hammered copper still, named Meabh (which means "she who intoxicates"), which has a vapour extraction basket for placing the seaweeds and botanicals into, which create the magical flavour.

"The coast around the mighty Sliabh Liag Cliffs hold an extraordinary bounty for local sea foragers like us, who use centuries-old knowledge of harvesting and harnessing the qualities of natural seaweeds," says Moira. "For example, we can only harvest the tiny , shy pepper dulse seaweed that grows in the cracks and crevices of the rocky headlands, when the moon is full and tides are at their lowest."

Due to the delicate nature of the botanicals sourced from the sea, they take an incredibly narrow cut of the distillate which helps mix of flavours shine through at precisely the right levels.

On the palate, there is soft bright juniper, which subsides as the complexity of An Dúlamán is revealed in rich umami, brisk salt and then a buttery oyster smoothness with hints of chestnut. Given time, sweet notes of peach and even Turkish Delight appear!

The unique bottle created by the distillery, is based upon those found along the Donegal coast, after ships of the Spanish Armada were wrecked on the rocks. The Spanish Armada was an enormous 130-ship naval fleet dispatched by Spain in 1588 as part of a planned invasion of England, but which encountered problems from the start and many ran aground along the Irish west coast.

The label of An Dúlamán Santa Ana Gin is an old map showing where the Spanish Armada Ship was wrecked

Last year, the distillery released a new "navy strength" style Gin, called An Dúlamán Santa Ana, Armada Strength Gin,  inspired by one of the many ships of the Spanish Armada, La Duquesa Santa Ana, which ran aground off the Loughros Mór Point, near Ardara.

In this new gin, they take the same seaweed-based spirit distillation and age it in Rioja wine barrels for up to 12 weeks! This adds another layer of flavour and a rose gold colour to the gin. It is then taken down to 57% abv, known also as "navy strength" and bottled into similar iconic bottles, sealing it with a deep red wax, all done by hand.

Though strong in alcohol, An Dúlamán Santa Ana is superbly smooth with a slight natural fruit sweetness adding to the complexity of the maritime flavours!

Celebrate your World Gin Day with An Dúlamán Santa Ana from the Sliabh Liag Distillery

Sliabh Liag Distillery also produces Silkie Irish Whiskey and are currently planning to build another brand new distillery in Ardara, County Donegal. You can purchase An Dúlamán Gin at most good off-licences nationwide and also directly from the Sliabh Liag Distillery website at Enjoy #WorldGinDay!


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