Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 21 October 2014

Bushmills takes whiskey on tour

Bushmills master distiller Colum Egan, who is helping the distillery pack up and hit the road

One of Ireland's oldest distilleries is packing up and hitting the road after 400 years on the same site.

But fans of Bushmills need not overly fret...the move is only temporary.

For the first time since its foundation in 1608 the famous whiskey maker is upping sticks from its home on Northern Ireland's north coast and going on tour.

But where to exactly is still up in the air.

The company has launched a global competition which will give the two winners the unique chance to host a mobile distillery in their own country.

Master distiller Colum Egan will be travelling too, working with the two lucky whiskey lovers for two weeks, initially at Bushmills, to help them mix a blend of their own.

"More than 100,000 people visit our distillery every year but there are millions of Bushmills fans the world over - so we thought it was about time that we visited them," said Mr Egan ahead of the competition launch on St Patrick's Day. "We're going to bring two friends here, give them behind-the-scenes access to the distillery, £5,000 spending money, luxury penthouse accommodation and the chance to together make their own unique blend of Bushmills Irish whiskey.

"Then we're going to take the distillery on tour, when we pack up some of the equipment, people and whiskey that make our distillery the home of the world's best Irish whiskey, and bring them to the winners' home country for the ultimate Bushmills party, where the winners and their friends will be the guests of honour.

"We'll have live music from some of Ireland's best up-and-coming musicians, we'll unveil our winners' unique blend and we'll even toast the occasion with a few bottles of our special Distillery Reserve - a whiskey you can normally only get at the distillery itself.

The "Make it 2 Bushmills" competition will culminate in a global final - Bushcamp - a three-day event taking place in August where two friends from each competing country will be voted by the public to go forward to the camp, where they will experience what life at the Old Bushmills Distillery has to offer.

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