Bono reported to be investing in Irish whiskey distillery

U2 frontman Bono is reported to be investing in a €50m whiskey project in county Kildare which will involve an old mill being converted into a 5,051 square-metre distillery and visitor centre.

Image: Facebook @U2

As reported by The Times, Bono, whose real name is Paul David Hewson, is investing in a whiskey distillery project being led by Irish property investor and business owner Paddy McKillen.

According to a planning application sent to Kildare County Council Planning Office by Jewelfield Ltd on 10 September, McKillen’s project involves “an artisan distillery and visitor centre” measuring 5,051.4 square-metres, of which 2,528 square-metres is existing and 3,523.4 square-metres is new build.

According to the The Times, McKillen is leading the project to develop Ballykelly Mill, near Monasterevin which will see the site transformed into a distillery and visitor centre complete with tasting rooms, exhibition space and a roof garden and viewing area.

Speaking to the paper, he said that his aim was to “revive Monasterevin’s rich heritage in producing the finest whiskey going right back to the 18th century.

“We’re investing €50m into this initial phase, which is the start of a long-term strategy. It fits very well with our existing hospitality businesses and the great global interest in Irish whiskey,” he added.

A distillery by the name of Cassidy’s once operated in the area, while planning permission was given to a smaller distillery operating out of the mill in 2015.

McKillen and son Paddy McKillen Jr own hospitality group Press Up which operates 28 hotels, bars, restaurants, venues and nightclubs in Ireland. Friends and business partners, Bono and McKillen Snr co-own the Clarence Hotel in Dublin.

The Times understands that McKillen is taking control of the project with Bono providing financial support.

If the plans are approved, Bono will join a growing list of celebrities with interests in the alcohol industry including Sir Ian Botham, 50 Cent and Graham Norton.

The Irish whiskey industry sold 9.7 million cases globally in 2017, an increase of 10.6%, according to the Irish Whiskey Association (IWA), with the sector in a “strong position” to surpass its 2020 target of 12m cases.

Read more:

TOP 10 CELEBRITY DRINKS LAUNCHES OF 2017

One Response to “Bono reported to be investing in Irish whiskey distillery”

  1. Teresa Smallberger says:

    Bono No Vox whiskey.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please note that comments are subject to our posting guidelines in accordance with the Defamation Act 2013. Posts containing swear words, discrimination, offensive language and libellous or defamatory comments will not be approved.

We encourage debate in the comments section and always welcome feedback, but if you spot something you don't think is right, we ask that you leave an accurate email address so we can get back to you if we need to.

Subscribe to our newsletters

Champagne Masters 2019

View Results

Rioja Masters 2019

View Results

Click to view more

Subscribe today to get each issue of The Drinks Business as soon as it's published, plus all the latest breaking news and access to our library of back issues.

Subscribe Today!

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

Stay up-to-date with the latest news about the international spirits industry every weekday lunchtime (GMT)