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These are IrishAmerican drinks for you to enjoy.
The word ‘whiskey’ (or whisky) comes from the Gaelic uisce beatha, meaning water of life. Irish whiskey was one of the earliest distilled drinks in Europe, arising around the 12th century. It is believed that Irish monks brought the technique of distilling perfumes back to Ireland from their travels to the Mediterranean countries around 1000 A.D. The Irish then modified this technique to obtain a drinkable spirit. Although termed “whiskey”, the spirit produced during this period would have differed from what we currently recognise as whiskey. The uisce beatha or whiskey produced in historical times would not have been aged, and was often flavoured with aromatic herbs such as mint, thyme or anise.
Although known to have occurred for hundreds of years, records of whiskey production in Ireland can be difficult to come by, in particular in the earlier years when production was unregulated. The oldest known written record of whiskey comes from Ireland in 1405 in the Irish Annals of Clonmacnoise where it was written that the head of a clan died after “taking a surfeit of aqua vitae” at Christmas. Its first known mention in Scotland dates from 1494. However, it is known that by 1556 whiskey was widespread, as an Act passed by the English Parliament declared whiskey to be “a drink nothing profitable to be drunken daily and is now used universally through the realm of Ireland”.