The Echlinville Distillery in Northern Ireland is undergoing an expansion to increase production capacity and support the global growth of its brands of Irish whiskey and gin.

The estimated investment in the distillery expansion is £9m ($11.73m) and the project is expected to create 36 jobs in administrative, operational and visitor centre roles.

The expansion will support the company’s growth and the development of its portfolio of award-winning products.

The distillery will focus on brand development and improving the global sales of its ultra-premium and premium Irish whiskey and gin products.

The Echlinville Distillery location

The distilling facility is located in Kircubbin in the Ards Peninsula, one hour away from Belfast and two and a half hours from Dublin.

The stillhouse is situated next to the 19th century Echlinville Manor House, which is the former seat of the Echlins.

The Echlinville Distillery expansion details

The project will include the development of a new immersive and dedicated visitor centre at the Echlinville Distillery, which is Northern Ireland’s first farm distillery. The investment will be used to add capacity in bottling, distillation, labelling, storage and brand development to increase the exposure of the company’s brands in the US, Russia, and other major international markets.

The distillery secured £659,000 ($859,477) in funding support from Invest Northern Ireland to procure new equipment and undertake the expansion of its storage facilities to meet the expected demand for its products. The expansion will allow the company to increase its export sales by ten times over the coming five years.

Through the expansion, Echlinville aims to boost whiskey tourism in the region, attracting both domestic and international visitors. The plan also includes the development of a museum, restaurant and tourist accommodation.

Product portfolio

The distillery’s product offerings include premium spirits brands such as Dunville’s Irish whiskey, Echlinville Single Estate Irish Pot Still Gin, Jawbox Gin and Bán Poitín.

“Through the expansion, Echlinville aims to boost whiskey tourism in the region, attracting both domestic and international visitors.”

Dunville’s Three Crowns Peated, launched in January 2018, is the third release in the company’s Dunville and Co. whiskey range. The remaining two whiskeys in the series include Dunville’s PX 10 Year Old Single Malt and Dunville’s Three Crowns.

The company launched the Dunville’s VR 18 Year Old Port Mourant Rum Finish Single Malt Irish Whiskey in September 2019. The latest addition to Dunville’s Single Cask Series, Dunville’s 18 Year Old Palo Cortado Sherry Cask Finish Whiskey, was introduced in September 2020. It was finished for approximately three years in rare Palo Cortado sherry cask and bottled at a cask strength of 54% abv.

The distillery crafts its whiskey as per the customers’ requirements. The single malt whiskey or pot still spirits crafted at the distillery are aged in the maturation hall for at least five years before they are finished in speciality casks.

Marketing commentary on The Echlinville Distillery

The Echlinville Distillery is an independent, family-owned farm distillery established in 2013 by founder and owner Shane Braniff. It became the first licensed distillery in Northern Ireland in more than 125 years.

The facility started production in 2013 and is the only field-to-glass distillery in Ireland. The distillery created multiple brands that have a strong presence in the international whiskey and gin market.

The Echlinville distillery received 30 awards at different competitions. Echlinville Single Estate Irish Pot Still Gin was recognised as the Best Irish Contemporary Style Gin at the World Gin Awards in 2019 while Dunville’s PX 10 Year Old Single Malt Irish Whiskey received the 2016 Irish Whiskey Award in the ‘12 years old and younger’ category.