Distillery serves up new vodka with Growth Loan Fund support

Distillery owner Joe McGirr with Jenna Mairs of WhiteRock Capital Partners
Distillery owner Joe McGirr with Jenna Mairs of WhiteRock Capital Partners

Fermanagh’s Boatyard Distillery is to create six new jobs as it grows it gin business and prepares to launch a new vodka.

The Enniskillen business has secured a £100,000 loan from the Growth Loan Fund to increase production as it gears up to meet export contracts recently secured in Switzerland, Denmark and the USA.

The distillery was set up in 2016 and currently produces a double gin, an Old Tom gin and vodka.

“Our double gin has secured over £250,000 of sales in its first year and all 1,200 bottles of our Old Tom gin sold out within 48 hours of launch,” said founder Joe McGirr.

“It is a very competitive market but we’ve managed to stand out among some strong local brands.

“The loan has enabled us to purchase two additional stills to increase the distillery’s productivity. We’ve been working on our vodka product for the past year and we’re excited to bring it to market this month.

“Our vodka’s unique selling point is that it isn’t filtered which helps preserve the taste and lock in the flavour.

“We recently launched our products in Switzerland and Denmark and in April we’ll be launching in the USA. We are exploring other markets and we’ll also be introducing a gift range in the coming months.”

Jenna Mairs, investment manager at WhiteRock Capital Partners, commented: “The gin scene in Northern Ireland has taken off in recent years after a resurgence in its popularity. The marketplace is competitive but The Boatyard has differentiated its offering and the introduction of a vodka product will open the doors to a new customer base.”