About 15 km north of Athlone, near the point where the River Inny enters Lough Ree, and close to the towns of Tang, Tubberclair and the legendary Three Jolly Pigeons lies the townland of Bethlehem.
It takes it’s name from the convent founded there, almost 400 years ago, in 1631 to be precise, by the Poor Claire order. In this remote location some 60 nuns lived in silence, barefoot and were the original vegetarians, never eating meat. They only stayed there 10 years, being forced to flee for their lives across the lake in 1641 to escape the oncoming English forces from Athlone who were in search of food, and who ultimately desecrated and burned the convent.
We named our Christmas 2021 release in honour of these remarkable ladies, and were delighted then when it won a Gold Medal at the Irish Whiskey Awards 2021.
Who knows what they would have thought of us naming a Whiskey after the area they gave the name Bethlehem to? .
And now we’re releasing something really special – a Cask Strength version of Bethlehem – something really special and limited to 100 bottles.
52.5 % ABV Single Grain Distilled in Cooley
This russet coloured 11 year old Single Grain Irish Whiskey was first matured in Bourbon casks, then finished for 2 years in a very old PX Sherry butt, giving delicate but complex dried fruit and nutty flavours and a pleasant sweetness.
The Pedro Ximénez (PX) sherry butt used to finish this whiskey was part of a solera system for more than 30 years before we sourced it and is of exceptional quality, giving an intense yet delicate finish to this whiskey.
Complex sherried nose bursting with sweet dried fruit and well-polished leather.
Soft and moreish- this doesn’t taste like a cask strength whiskey. Delicate yet very complex with honeyed oak to start and intense caramelised fruit flavours, moving on to spicy clove and ginger with rich dark chocolate and walnuts.
Long with dried fruit sweetness, continuing to spice and dark chocolate.
Like all of The Bridge releases, this is a non chill-filtered whiskey with no added colour.
The 46% release of this whiskey won a Gold Medal at the Irish Whiskey Awards 2021 and a Bronze Medal at International Wine and Spirits Competition 2021.