Visitors to Ireland wanting to explore the fascinating history of Irish whiskey need travel no further than Tullamore in County Offaly in the heart of the beautiful Irish Midlands. Enjoy the heritage tour on the site of the original Tullamore Dew distillery. During your visit you can follow the history of canals; capture a sense of Tullamore’s merchant classes as the town grew in prosperity and learn about The Legendary Tullamore Dew Irish whiskey – how it is made, and how it has been important for Tullamore. And at the end of your tour, relax in the bar downstairs and enjoy a tasting of Tullamore’s finest.
The Heritage Centre is the only one of its type in Ireland. It is housed in one of the original distillery buildings on Bank Quay, which once thronged with distillers, blenders, coopers and warehousemen. Over 150 years ago, much of the town’s wealth came from the distillery and the Grand Canal that runs immediately alongside it. The canal, which connects Tullamore with Dublin, was of vital importance to the distillery, bringing goods and materials into the town and distributing the whiskey to its markets. Today all is quiet; the canal is now used by leisure craft while whiskey production has moved to newer facilities.
The quayside buildings have been carefully restored to preserve the original features and atmosphere of a thriving distillery, and today they house an extensive museum as well a gift shop, bar and bistro. The town’s Tourist Office – which helps many thousands of visitors each year – can also be found here.
Visitors taking the 45-minute guided tour can get a glimpse of the long-gone times when the distillery dominated the town. The intriguing origins and inter-linked history of Tullamore Dew, the town and canal are celebrated through a series of audio-visual presentations, exhibits, models and tableaux. As they walk through the old warehouse rooms, visitors can learn about life in a small Irish town in the 1800’s, how whiskey was made, and how Mr Daniel E Williams – using his initials to create a distinctive name - developed Tullamore Dew into one of Ireland’s greatest exports.
At the end of the tour, visitors can relax in the Centre’s own bar and bistro and enjoy a complimentary glass of Tullamore Dew. Before leaving, visitors looking for souvenirs and gifts can browse a wide range of merchandise at the Centre’s shop.
Tullamore Dew Heritage Centre, Bury Quay, Tullamore, Co. Offaly. Telephone: +353 57 9325015