Irish Rose Saloon – Reopening!

At long last, The Irish Saloon is getting into shape and getting ready to reopen. We HOPE this will be somewhere around mid-July — but there’s an awful lot of work to do! We need to do a lot of cleaning, rebuild some stuff, restock and re-staff. About a year ago, some staff worked hard to re-paint and redecorate, and we want to get it back to that shiny state it was in.

Our capacity will only be about 130 people; we will probably not have draft beer at first; we have to follow all the covid rules about having masks while not at your table, and signing in for potential tracing, etc… there will be no smoking inside! But we’ve been setting up TVs for sports, got the soda lines run, have the dart boards installed, and are working hard on all the other hundreds of bits that it takes to get a proper pub up and running.

Soon! Keep tabs on our Instagram and Facebook pages for updates! (But please, don’t pester our former/soon-to-be bartenders. They don’t get inside information.)

Kelley O’Neil’s – Open!

Kelley O’Neil’s is now open, under the same management (John Langan,) but new ownership.

We have COVID-19 precautions in place according to government requirements; we have fries, fish & chips, chicken fingers, beer-batter onion rings, zucchini fries, a QR-Code Menu, signage, tables, 4 beers on tap including a REAL FULL IMPERIAL PINT O’ GUINNESS, some nice, oft-hilarious people to talk to, no live music yet, some great cocktails, stunning whiskey, our usual fantastic service, underwear gnomes, soon a new fancy website of our own, and are, as always, Celtic AF.

Please com by, and say hello, and raise a pint with us. We’re still masked, !@*#@*)&#@, but not for much longer, God willing.

Erin go Bragh.

A Pot Still vs a Column Still.

By 1822, there had been several attempts at making column stills, attempts at lowering the cost and increasing the speed of making whiskey using traditional copper pot stills. Copper pot stills had been used to make whiskey in batches for centuries. (Watch how a copper pot still works, by clicking here.) That’s when Aeneas Coffey started working on an improved version.

He made changes to existing column stills, letting the vapors produced re-circulate into the still, instead of moving into the receiver with the spirit like current copper pot stills and previous column stills did. The result was more efficient, producing a ‘lighter’ spirit at higher alcohol content, and did so continuously — thus, producing more product. Coffey patented his design in 1831, and it is the basis for every subsequent column still. (Watch how a column still works, here.)

He tried to sell it to the Irish whiskey makers, but they felt it made an inferior, less tasty drink, and would have none of it, even adding an “e” to the word whiskey to distinguish it. Coffey, perfectly aware that the Scottish were a bunch of cheap bastards, took his invention to Scotland, where it sold gangbusters. We’ll start at the critical part (for this topic) of this video, but you can always rewind to watch the whole thing:

Pot Still vs Column Still Whiskey.

Hi, and welcome back, and thanks for checking us out during our enforced hiatus.

Copper pot still whiskey, or column (Coffey) stilled whiskey? Without going into too much detail on the differences between the kids of stills, this video discusses a lot about the differences in taste between the two. Bill Comerford likes to describe pot-stilled whiskey as having an “oily” taste. Pot stills are an older, slower way of making whiskey that retains more of the congeners and byproducts of the original wash, and we will go into a bit of that in the next post.

Adirondack Barrel Cooperage

Hi! We see you are still checking in. In good news, there are some vaccines now, so, there’s finally a light at the end of this miserable tunnel, and, hopefully by next year at this time, we’ll be clinking a glass together with company, as it should be. Meanwhile, something to keep you entertained… ever wonder how whiskey barrels are made? What a cooper’s croze is? It is all in this fascinating video. Grab a dram while you watch the Adirondack Barrel Cooperage make barrels… they use traditional coopering methods to build spirit barrels out of American oak. Their one-of-a-kind barrel charring and toasting process imparts complex flavors in spirits, like smoke, coconut, vanilla, caramel, and more.