About Cooley Distillery, Co. Louth

Cooley Distillery Logo Redacted Whiskey

Unlike Redacted Whiskey which was founded for the craic on a hangover. Cooley was founded in 1987 by John Teeling. It holds the distinction of being the first independent Irish distillery in over a century. Nestled in Riverstown on the Cooley Peninsula in County Louth, this innovative distillery marked a new era for Irish whiskey production. Teeling, inspired by the historical decline of Irish whiskey, transformed a state-run potato spirit distillery, Ceimici Teoranta, into a thriving hub of whiskey excellence.

For years it was only the Cooley Distillery that produced a peated/smoky whiskey on the island of Ireland which was used as the flag pole that indeed Irish whiskey can too be smoked. 

The Journey of John Teeling

John Teeling's vision for Cooley Distillery began in 1971 when he penned papers at Harvard University on the rapid decline of Irish whiskey production. His determination led him to purchase and transform the state-owned distillery in 1985. By 1989, Cooley had established two distilleries: a grain distillery for light blends and a pot still distillery for pure pot still single malt.

In 2011, the distillery caught the attention of Jim Beam, which acquired Cooley for $95 million. This acquisition eventually led to Cooley becoming part of Beam Suntory, a global spirits giant. 

Pot Stills

Unlike traditional mainstream Irish whiskeys that typically undergo triple distillation, Cooley showcased whiskeys that are double-distilled, adding a distinctive character to their spirits. These pot stills being used have a rich history, having been previously used at the Old Comber Distillery near Newtownards.

Column Stills

However it might be the tall column stills that take centre stage at Cooley- which have been part of the distillation process for much longer. Initially used for producing neutral and industrial alcohol under government commission, these column stills were repurposed by the Teeling family to create light, flora and mild blends. The versatility of this grain whiskey allows Cooley to produce a diverse range of whiskey styles, further distinguishing the distillery in the Irish whiskey landscape.


Cooley Distillery boasts an impressive portfolio of whiskeys, each with its own unique flavour profile:

  • Tyrconnell: Known for its fruity and malty notes with Sherry, Port, and Madeira finishes.
  • Kilbeggan: A classic Irish blend It also offers grain whiskeys with sweet vanilla and distinct oak flavours.
  • Connemara: Always said to be unusually heavily peated for an Irish whiskey. Connemara combines sweet-fruity notes, and a distinct vanilla flavour with a smokiness.


    Naggins by Redacted

    When a rare cask of 20-year-old single grain Irish whiskey from Cooley landed on our desk (lol), we couldn't resist the opportunity. At Redacted Whiskey, we pride ourselves on our pursuit for great Irish Whiskey and know just how exceptional Cooley's grain whiskey can be. We wanted to share this remarkable find with the world, so we decided to bottle it in a fun and unique way: in a naggin bottle, just for the craic

    Irish Whiskey Naggin by Redacted Whiskey

    20 Year Old Cooley Distillery Irish Whiskey Naggin

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