The entrace to Jameson Distillery, Bow Lane.

©AnneMarie McCarthy/Lonely Planet

Jameson Distillery Bow Street

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Smithfield’s biggest draw is devoted to uisce beatha (ish-kuh ba-ha, ‘the water of life’); that's Irish for whiskey. To its more serious devotees, that is precisely what whiskey is, although they may be put off by the slickness of this museum (occupying part of the old distillery that stopped production in 1971), which shepherds visitors through a compulsory tour of the recreated factory (the tasting at the end is a lot of fun) and into the ubiquitous gift shop.

If you're really serious about whiskey, you can deepen your knowledge with the Whiskey Makers or the Whiskey Shakers, two 90-minute masterclasses that deconstruct the creation of Jameson whiskeys and teach you how to make a range of whiskey-based cocktails. If you're just buying whiskey, go for the stuff you can't buy at home, such as the excellent Red Breast or the super-exclusive Midleton, a very limited reserve that is appropriately expensive.

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