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Another Year In
December 27, 2023 | article | 5 minute read

A look back at the 2023 vintage

Not entirely sure how, but one way or another 12 months have gone by and here we are again looking back at the year that was.

The joy – and occasionally the challenge – of natural whisky is in accepting the variations of vintage. Every year is different; for the barley and ourselves. 2023 will certainly go down as one of the memorable ones.

It was a harder year for our growers, as we’ve seen; one that put them to the test as no year since we started our project. Happily they rose to it, as we knew they would. 

Harvest

Challenges in the barleyfield aside though, 2023 has been memorable for all the right reasons. We’ve continued on our quest for whisky’s most natural flavour and met a host of likeminded travellers along the road.

Two glittering high points were our first Grower’s Gathering Festival, back in the summer, and Whisky Live Paris later in October. The first was the natural evolution of our annual Grower’s Gathering; something we’ve wanted to do for years now. No longer a small growers-only affair, June saw us throw open the distillery gates to 500 natural whisky lovers. There were tours, masterclasses, special bottlings; there was music, food – and of course single malt galore. A marvellous day – it’ll be back in 2024. Whisky Live Paris has fast become one of the best weekends in our calendar; a three-day whirlwind of talking, pouring and celebration.

Tour of the stills.

We’ve bottled some landmark whiskies this year, too. Our first Single Farm Organic – Killone, from the Booth’s – was released at the Grower’s Gathering Festival and has gone down a storm. In September we unleashed our next two Peated Single Farms – Woodbrook and Lacken – the most heavily peated Irish whiskies of all time.

Of course, most significantly of all, our American friends have begun to see our trio of new Cuvée Concepts – Peated Cuvée: Fumo, Organic Cuvée: Gaia, and our new flagship, The Waterford Cuvée: Koffi. Cuvées are the apogee of our project – our attempt to make, with ultimate creativity, what we believe to be the most profound and complex single malts ever. Multiple matured Single Farm Origins brought together in mind-bending harmony. We’re so excited to have shared them with a few of you now – our friends around the rest of the world can expect to see them rolling out next year.

And so to 2024. Grand plans are already afoot. A rocket ship to our distribution, particularly in American means that many, many more of you will have access to our single malt than ever before. Our projects continue apace; from heritage barley to maturation. There’s a lot of whisky to bottle and barley to distil. It’ll be eventful. For now, a simple ‘thank you’ from us for all of your support for our single malt project this year. See you in 2024.

USA Release

Waterford Whisky By Numbers 2023

Single Farm Origins distilled: 20

Tonnes of barley through the distillery: 1,481.88

Litres of spirit distilled: 525,100

Casks filled: 3448

Organic, biodynamic and heritage distillations: 10

Heritage varieties distilled: 3 (Hunter, Spratt Archer, Old Irish)

Farms harvested in 2023: 26

(Total different farms harvested to date): 106


Barley percentages 2023:

Organic: 31%
Biodynamic: 21%
Heritage: 9%
Conventional: 39%

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