FERMANAGH-based spirits maker The Boatyard Distillery are continuing to expand, and have announced its launch into the US market.

As of May 1, Boatyard Double Gin is available throughout New York state, distributed by established distributor Empire Merchants, a premium wine and spirits distributor that have roots going back to the end of Prohibition.

In addition to this launch, The Boatyard Distillery has also announced the appointment of Michael Smoley as Market Manager, based in New York.

Michael joins Boatyard following a lauded tenure at New York’s NoMad Hotel, where he was one of the key leaders behind the NoMad Bar's success, with it consistently featuring in the World’s 50 Best Bars lists, amongst other accolades.

Late 2020 saw The Boatyard Distillery appoint previous Director of Bars of The Savoy, Declan McGurk, as Commercial Director, and this recent appointment bolsters the distillery's trade credentials.

The Boatyard Distillery was founded by Joe McGirr in 2016 close to Enniskillen, and focuses on crafting premium spirits that combine quality with provenance and heritage.

Boatyard Double Gin, a 46 per cent ABV Irish distilled gin, contains a locally foraged botanical called 'Sweet Gale', in an otherwise classic recipe. The 'double' in its name refers to a double contact with juniper during distillation, resulting in unique taste, perfect for martinis.

Speaking of the distillery's latest news, McGurk said: “Our US launch is a landmark moment for Boatyard, and we are overjoyed to be partnered with Empire Merchants in New York.

"To then add the appointment of Michael Smoley demonstrates our intent within the market.

"As a business, we certainly don’t have limitless resources, but securing the services of Michael will allow us to ensure that the Boatyard service attitude crosses over the Atlantic.”

Smoley said he is "beyond pleased" to start his journey with The Boatyard Distillery. "From day one their values have perfectly aligned with mine – they put their people first, they’re obsessed with quality, and they’re doing it all in a sustainable way, ensuring that we are here to stay.

"Launching Boatyard in the US, starting with New York, is a thrilling prospect. New Yorkers constantly see trends come and go.

"When we find something of genuine quality that’s also truly innovative, we [New Yorkers] latch on and never let go.

"My goal is to show New Yorkers, and then the rest of the country, that Boatyard is a brand worth latching on to.

"The quality, passion, transparency, and innovation are there. The stage is set for creating a lasting impact on the industry," he added.