The Cuige, is Killowen’s mark on the world of poitín. According to Founder, Brendan Carty “We believe in quality poitín and that it can be ‘premiumised’, we believe that poitín should be put on a pedestal. As such, we made a peated poitín worthy of a hand-crafted pedestal, carved from a Killowen whiskey cask. Only 192 sets have been made.“
Brendan goes on to explain that the Cuige is “A spirit representing Ireland’s history and present, acknowledged her historical five provinces by finishing a unique poitín, in five different firkin casks from five select breweries, each representing those old provinces. The Irish word ‘Cuige’ meaning ‘provinces’ or ‘Fifths’ originated prior to the cessation of Meath as a province in the early 1600’s.”
Those chosen breweries are Dead Centre Brewing ‘Meath’, Mescan Brewery ‘Connaught’, O’Brother Brewing ‘ Leinster’, Whitewater Brewing ‘Ulster’, and West Kerry Brewery ‘Munster’.
This unique peated mash bill boasts a larger oat percentage than Killowen’s core mash-bill, as a tribute to the integral part oat has played in Irish distillation history. After a 24-hour flame-fed, double-distillation, and worm-tub condensation, the spirit is laid in casks at full strength for 10 weeks, (as is the maximum allowable time by the Irish Poitín Technical File).
Each bottle is hand-filled, hand-labelled, wax-dipped, and hand-written. Each set has its own unique rustic pedestal made from a Killowen cask stave which has been, heat-straightened, carved for bottles, engraved with the Killowen Cuige Logo and wax finished.
Brendan chimes that “This release truly is certainly ‘Very Rare’. As usual, all your information is on the Killowen Label.”
The names and Images for each bottle come from different locations carrying particular affection to Killowen Distillery, and places which Killowen think signify each cuige.
Ulster:’Donard’ – The highest mountain in The Mournes – God’s country Munster:’Mish’ – The Slieve Mish range to the east of Dingle peninsula Connaught:’Lutty’ – A remarkably beautiful & remote part of Galway Leinster:’Duff’ – Duff Hill – middle of the mighty Wicklow Mountains Meath:’Caillí’ – Sliabh na Caillí – largest peak in Meath
Wood finishing: Chosen by Breweries to best signify their ‘Cuige’
Each brewery carries it’s own subtle taste notes: such as lemon, cheese, fig, coffee, cocao and wild berries. please open the bottles and taste them to find out. Dead Centre Brewing: Imperial Stout cask. Mescan Brewery: Westport Red Tripple cask. O’Brother Brewing: Dreamcatcher IPA cask. Whitewater Brewing: Belfast Black Stout cask. West Kerry Brewery: Carraig Dhubh Porter cask.
This collection will be made available at 4PM GMT, on Friday 26th, Feburary 2021. If you’d like to get your hands on the Cuige (after they go live) click here.