By Don Brunell/Don C. Brunell is a business analyst, writer and columnist. He retired as president of the Association of Washington Business, the state’s oldest and largest business organization, and now lives in Vancouver. He can be contacted at theBrunells@msn.com.
Last month while touring Ireland, our guide proudly pointed out Irish whiskey is making a strong comeback and thanked us, Americans, for our hefty contribution to their sales and shipments.
Irish whiskey, even though its volumes are less than scotch and bourbon, is the world’s fastest growing major spirit. Production shot up by 130 percent since 2005.
Of course, the Irish are quick to point out, the United States’ prohibition laws between 1920 and 1933 were a big reason Ireland’s whiskey sales dried up in the first place.
All friendly jousting aside, there are now 16 distilleries in Ireland and Northern Ireland with 11 more on the drawing board, according to the Irish Whiskey Association. There were four just three years ago.