Feckin Whiskey hits the States
A whiskey from Co Down is causing ripples in America.
Portaferry publican Shane Braniff, the man behind Feckin Irish Whiskey, has signed a major deal with a US distributor to supply the cult whiskey to a growing army of fans in the States.
The Ulster brand, which Mr Braniff founded in 2005, is being imported by World Spirits, a division of Minneapolis-based Philips Distilling Company.
The distribution deal means that Feckin is now available in Illinois, Georgia, Massachusetts and Minnesota.
Initially World Spirits is distributing around 60,000 bottles of the whiskey in the US, backed by a promotional campaign devised by Chicago ad agency The Escape Pod, whose creative director Vinnie Warren dreamt up the famous Budweiser 'Whassup' campaign.
However, a US-wide distribution plan is in place for 2008.
The drink, which is produced at the Cooley Distillery in Co Louth, is also to be made more widely available in Northern Ireland following the signing of a deal with distributor LMI.
The domestic tie-up will help the brand to access a further 700 licensed outlets in the province on top of the 300 where it is already available.
"Aimed at brand conscious drinkers, Feckin Irish Whiskey is the must-drink spirit for those who want to enjoy the craic with their favourite tipple. It's quite simply a high quality whiskey product with a cheeky twist," explained Mr Braniff, who runs The Ship Inn pub in Portaferry.
"We're still small, unknown by most, searched for by many, but thrilled with our latest American deal," he revealed.