Remembering Partrick Sarsfield

This week marks the anniversary of Patrick Sarsfield’s death. 

A courageous Man of Action, he relentlessly fought for freedom and dreamed of one day returning to Ireland to enjoy this important liberty. Tragically, he would never return to his homeland, but sparked the story of The Wild Geese – a story that lives on to this day. 

The high quality of our multi award winning Collection of Irish Whiskeys reflects the rich and significant story that inspires it. Each bottle of The Wild Geese Irish Whiskey commemorates these brave men and women who left Ireland seeking a new life.

Man of Action

Educated at a French Military, it is thought that Sarsfield was always prepared to take action – preferring to face daring pursuits in battle, rather than plan strategic campaigns of war. This passion burned in him throughout his military career. He first saw service in the army of Luxembourg as an ensign, and served in the army of King Louis XIV of France between 1671-1678. 

When James II ascended to the English throne in 1685, Sarsfield served under the King’s commander in Ireland, Richard Talbot. Although James II recognised Sarsfield’s raw courage, he didn’t think that he was capable of high command or initiating strategies of war. 

Nevertheless Sarsfield served with distinction in the Williamite War. In 1690, Sarsfield served under St. Ruth, who he often disagreed with. But when St. Ruth fell in battle, Sarsfield ordered a hasty retreat. Unable to turn the tide of the battle, Sarsfield organised a strategic retreat – saving many of the men who served under him. 

He continued the war effort, by leading the defence of the Second Siege of Limerick. Faced with escalating odds, and realising that many more lives would be lost in a prolonged campaign, Sarsfield negotiated the Treaty of Limerick. In the Treaty, he ended the war and secured the rights of his people. 

The Wild Geese

But Sarsfield was unable to live under English rule. With many of his followers he boarded ships bound for France, and left Ireland believing he had ensured freedom for the people he had fought for. Taking the name ‘Wild Geese’, Sarsfield and his followers believed that one day they would enjoy this freedom in their homeland. 

Unfortunately the Treaty was not honoured by the English and Sarsfield served in European armies for the following three years. While fighting for King Louis XIV he received a Meréchal-de-camp (lieutenant-general commission), but was badly wounded in the Battle of Landen. Taken back to Huy, Belgium, Sarsfield did not recover from his injury and died three days later. 

It is thought that upon examining his bloody wound, and realising that he may soon die, his last words were ‘Oh if only this were for Ireland’. Sarsfield was buried in Huy, in St. Martin’s Church. Although is body was laid to rest in Belgium, it is clear that his heart belonged in Ireland. 

Preparing for Independence Day…

Independence Day is fast a approaching and we’re sure our friends across the US are preparing for the national holiday. Marking America’s independence from the Britain, the holiday is a reminder of the principles of freedom and liberty the country has been built on.

We want to help you celebrate with a classic American recipe and two of our summery cocktails – ‘Homebound’ and ‘The Long Goodbye’. 

In New York City, Macy’s will be sponsoring 4th July Fireworks, which will be set off from six barges on the Hudson River, between 20th and 55th street. The theme of the event will be ‘The Gift of Freedom’, which will mark the 125th birthday of the Statue of Liberty. 40,000 fireworks are scheduled to be used, synchronised to a mix of American pop anthems and there will even be a performance from Glastonbury headliner Beyoncé!

On the West coast in LA, Americafest will include an evening of live entertainment, including a performance the DCI Phantom Regiment band and the Ives Brothers FMX motorcycle stunt. The event will culminate in the largest firework display in Southern California.

In Boston, there are 6 six days of festivities to get involved with. Harborfest will include ‘Extreme Sailing’ on Boston’s waterfront, a concert series and historical re-enactment.

The nation’s capital will be hosting the Independence Day Parade, which will include marching bands, floats, giant balloons and displays by military units.

Wherever you will be on July 4th, we hope you enjoy your Independence Day. 

Cocktail Clinic in Amsterdam, 28th April 2011

Cocktails are very important to The Wild Geese Collection. They present whiskey in a very different, very contemporary fashion. Our collection of cocktails perfectly capture the versatility of the Rare Irish and Classic expressions of the Collection.

Last week, The Wild Geese hosted an intimate cocktail clinic in Amsterdam – tucked away in a charismatic wine cellar, which provided an ideal location to share what The Wild Geese has to offer. Our resident mixologist Nick Wykes was on hand to introduce the The Wild Geese cocktail recipes.

The Wild Geese Irish Whiskey already has a remarkable relationship with the cocktail market. The Five Points and The Long Goodbye have each won a Gold Medals at the Drinks International Cocktail Challenge. The Rare Irish Whiskey is the recipient of a Silver Medal itself, and is the staple ingredient of many of our cocktail recipes, providing a memorable foundation and lasting taste. 

After the tasting and mixing, our guests kindly let us know their thoughts. Thank you to all who attended and we hope you enjoyed The Wild Geese Irish Whiskey Collection. Particular thanks goes to Hans de Lang for putting together such a successful event and Nick Wykes, whose enthusiasm for The Wild Geese is eternally appreciated. 

A Weekend In The Life Of… A Wild Geese Brand Ambassador

A few weekends ago The Wild Geese Irish Whiskey Collection (sold in North America under the brand name of ‘The Wild Geese Irish Soldiers & Heroes’) turned up in San Francisco for Whiskies of the World Expo. The event was a huge success and back here in London, we were delighted with the pictures we received. 

But its not all sitting back and looking at photographs. We need people on the ground, spreading the message of The Wild Geese – to both the consumer and bar owners. Shann Dornhecker offers a behind the scenes glance at the life of a brand ambassador. 

Take it away….

Being an LA native there is a natural rivalry between my hometown and San Francisco..and due to TSA pat downs, it seemed that I would never make it up there, unless I finally made an effort, however, becoming the Brand Ambassador for The Wild Geese Irish Soldiers & Heroes presented me with a lovely opportunity to go.

My first day was your typical pre-show stuff – meeting our booth model Nourit Raphael, a San Francisco beauty, native born and bred, meetings with distributors, reviews of local magazines, a quick change and then off to a special pouring at Swig located on Geary St. This was a great opportunity to meet with the reps of other brands as well as some of the VIP attendees. This also provided me with the opportunity to get to know Douglas Smith, the President of Whiskies of the World and his lovely wife Lana, who were the consummate host and hostess.  It’s amazing what they have built out of an idea to have a party to enjoy some great whiskies. The event was great fun and ended early enough that I could indulge in my favorite past time before turning in to get ready for the show–a cigar and a good whiskey.  

Using my trusty my iPhone, it only took me 2 hours to do a 15 minute walk to find the Occidental Cigar Bar. I shall remember next time to turn on the compass when following the Google map – I learned that the streets of San Francisco are laid out at intersecting angles, and while you may walk a straight line, that straight line crossing at a light will put you on a completely different street – it really was a 15 minute walk, only I kept getting lost.  Though in my meandering, I did manage to see a parade of bicyclists on Market Street including a naked man wearing nothing more than a stocking cap on his head–which caused me to wonder…is there such thing as too much self esteem? 

I finally arrived at the Occidental Cigar Bar and found it to be a wonderful little refuge of the best kind of vices – cigars, whiskey, wine, a great jukebox and the only bar in San Francisco that you can still have a smoke and a drink. I met the owner/bartender – Lance, an incredibly knowledgeable gentleman who knows his whiskies, and if you tell him what you’re smoking, he can pour you something fantastic that matches your smoke perfectly. Getting to know Lance after he poured me something lovely (as he regretfully did not have The Wild Geese in stock – something that was quickly remedied after he tried us at the show), he mentioned that he was building an Irish Whiskey Collection. 

Chaney (former LA native and) Manager/Head Bartender
of Cigar Bar & Grill in San Francisco, showing off his new
UNTAMED tattoo – look for The Wild Geese Irish Soldiers &
Heroes Classic Blend coming soon to their location
As of this past Monday, the Occidental Cigar Bar is officially carrying The Wild Geese Irish Soldiers & Heroes Classic and Single Malt. Please stop in and ask Lance or Rick for a taste and tell them I sent you.

The other wonderful thing about San Francisco is its community. Lance graciously arranged for me to meet with the Bar Manager/Head Bartender of Cigar Bar & Grill, a beautiful club, where you can have a cigar and a drink on their outside patio. Ben and Chaney not only liked the tasting but were also excited about the many cocktails you can mix with the Classic, as unlike Occidental Cigar Bar – they do make cocktails.

On Monday, Nourit graciously played hostess with her lovely friend Elyse, and they took me around to see the sites.  Though it was your typical San Francisco weather, I did manage to snap the picture of the Golden Gate bridge above. For more pictures of the Whiskies of The World Show please see our Facebook Page

The Wild Geese Irish Whiskey turned up a few weeks ago, on our Italian distributors’ blog – Meregalli Magazine. Meregalli suggested including The Wild Geese’s Single Malt in St. Patrick’s Day recipes, to help papas across the world celebrate the Irish national holiday.

But with Mother’s Day quickly approaching, the ideal gift may lay in the range of sophisticated Cocktail recipes of The Wild Geese. The Whiskey market is growing rapidly, and with this comes innovative new ways to enjoy the unique taste Irish whiskey has to offer. Our female demographic is continuing to grow, proving that this is a whiskey for modern times.

The Quiet American 

Astringent fruit flavours married with rich cocoa and vanilla to produces an elegant, textured Martini style cocktail. The vanilla complements the oak notes of The Rare Irish Whiskey, while the rhubarb and lime brings balance to the cocoa sweetness and a zing to the palate.

50 ml The Wild Geese Rare Irish Whiskey 
20 ml Crème de Cacao (white)
1 bar spoon rhubarb and vanilla jam
1 bar spoon vanilla sugar
10ml Fresh lime juice

Shake all ingredients with ice and fine strain into chilled cocktail glass. Garnish with a lime wedge

Irish Punch 

A sophisticated champagne cocktail. The honey adds depth to the plate while the lemon juice adds a citric bite allowing The Rare Irish Whiskey to bring a strong whiskey character to a classic style of sparkling aperitif cocktail.

35ml The Wild Geese Rare Irish Whiskey
10ml Liquid honey
20ml Fresh lemon juice 
Top with sparkling wine

Shake all ingredients except sparkling wine with ice and strain into chilled flute, top with sparkling wine and snap lemon zest.

The Long Goodbye

Fresh strawberry and elderflower provide a lightly fruity and floral tone, sweetened by vanilla notes and lifted by sparkling lemonade. The lighter fruit flavours give The Wild Geese Rare Irish Whiskey room to breathe and a platform for the fresher wood flavours.

50ml The Wild Geese Rare Irish Whiskey 
35ml Elderflower cordial 
2 strawberries
2 lime wedges
1 bar spoon vanilla sugar
170ml Lemonade

Muddle limes, strawberries and sugar in a highball glass, add crushed ice, Rare Irish Whiskey and elderflower cordial and stir. Top with lemonade and garnish with a strawberry slice. 

We’re sure Mothers everywhere will enjoy any of these after a intimate homemade meal, however, these are perfect for any occasion.

**In North America, The Wild Geese Irish Whiskey Collection is sold under the ‘brand name’ ‘The Wild Geese Irish Soldiers & Heroes’

Whiskies of The World, San Francisco – 26th March 2011 (Pt. 2)

‘The Irish know their Whiskey. Go Geese!’
 We you all enjoyed writing this feedback as we did reading it! We hope you continue to enjoy our Collection!

‘The Wild Geese Irish Soldiers & Heroes Rocks!’

‘The Wild Geese in my new… Lover/Boyfriend/Husband’
You’re making us blush!

’9 out 10 Whiskeyologists agree… its REALLY GOOD. Really.’ 
‘Awesome Geese!!’
We love the drawing.
‘Oh Blimey!’
Our friends across the pond are pretty artistic. Keep the drawings coming!
‘The Best!’
Simple and to the point. We love it. 
‘Loved the Drink! Send me some Wild Geese over seas!’
‘Smooth & Smoke. Ireland gets me every time. Marry me?’
Thats our second proposal, we’re flattered. 
‘Wild Geese over seas’
We love your take on our ‘tattoo’ logo and the reference to the brand story. Really great.
We hoe everyone who went to Whiskies of the World enjoyed themselves and we’re already looking forward to our next event – WSWA in Orlando, Florida. 

Whiskies of The World, San Francisco – 26th March 2011

The Wild Geese Irish Whiskey – sold in North and Central America under the ‘brand name’ The Wild Geese Irish Soldiers & Heroes – was showcasing at Whiskies of the World in San Francisco last weekend. 
The event was great fun and we were astounded by the response The Collection received from the public. Its really great to see people enjoying the whiskey and connecting with the story that inspires it. 

‘This Whiskey made a soldier out of me’
The story of the Flight of the Wild Geese is a key driving force behind our brand, and we really enjoy sharing it with the consumer

‘Ab Fab! Tour WILL be arranged next Ireland trip’

‘Slaíte Wild Geese Irish Soldiers & Heroes’
Slaíte’ is a traditional drinking toast, meaning Good Health. We share the sentiment.

The Wild Geese Irish Soldiers & Heroes is available at Bevmo stores in California

‘Very nice and smooth’
Thanks Joe!


‘Very Smooth’