Bushmills pay homage to Hill Street heritage with its ‘oldest and rarest’ whiskey ever released in Europe

Just 208 bottles of the Bushmills Hill Street Edition will be released by The Friend at Hand at £5,000 per bottle

The new Bushmills Hill Street Edition, an exclusive 36-year-old Irish whiskey collaboration with The Friend at Hand in Belfast.
The new Bushmills Hill Street Edition, an exclusive 36-year-old Irish whiskey collaboration with The Friend at Hand in Belfast.

Bushmills has launched one of its oldest and rarest Irish whiskey releases to date in a collaboration with Belfast’s Friend at Hand.

The Bushmills Hill Street Edition is a 36-year-old Irish whiskey created exclusively for the Cathedral Quarter retailer, which is part of the Commercial Court Inns hospitality group, headed by well-known publican Willie Jack.

The Belfast whiskey shop and museum, which opened in November 2022 following a £2 million investment, houses one of the largest collections of rare Irish whiskeys in the world.

Priced at £5,000, Bushmills Hill Street Edition is one of the most expensive new Irish whiskey bottles ever put on shelves in the north.

Just 208 bottles have been produced, to be sold exclusively by The Friend at Hand.

The 36-year-old single malt is a homage to Hill Street, home to The Friend at Hand and formerly home to the headquarters of Bushmills.

In the late 19th century and early 20th century, Belfast rivalled Dublin as the epicentre for global whiskey production.

A bottle of Bushmills Hill Street Edition resting on documentation.
Just 208 bottles of Bushmills Hill Street Edition have been produced, priced at £5,000 each.

Hill Street at that time was a hive of bonded warehouses, with whiskey casks a regular sight rolling along its cobbles toward the ships docked on the Farset River.

“Belfast’s proud industrial past and rich whiskey heritage paved the way for a craft that, centuries later, continues to stand the test of time,” said Willie Jack.

“It’s fitting that our shared heritage and spirit of collaboration are commemorated in this special release, which, with just 208 bottles available, is sure to be in high demand.”

Distilled in 1986, the single malt whiskey was transferred to a sherry hogshead cask in March 2001, before being bottled at 48% ABV.

It is presented in a bespoke hexagonal box, handcrafted in black American walnut, and adorned with an intricate map of Belfast etched in gold.

Bushmills master blender, Alex Thomas said: “In every bottle of Bushmills, we honour our past and the immense passion and patience required to craft the world’s most exclusive single malts.

“It is my privilege to bring this exceptional whiskey back to Belfast, to the site of Bushmills’ former HQ on Hill Street, in what is a milestone moment for the brand.”