The Smithwicks Experience at St Francis Abbey Brewery
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St Francis Abbey Brewery
, Parliament St,, Kilkenny City, Kilkenny, Republic of Ireland
Saint Francis Abbey Brewery, in Kilkenny City, is where Smithwick's Superior Irish Ale has been crafted and perfected since 1710. Guided tours of the brewery are available.
From September 30th 2013 the Smithwick’s Visitor Experience will close due to maintenance work and upgrade to the facility. Reopening of this facility will be in Spring 2014. Apologies for any inconvenience caused.
Over 300 years ago in 1710, John Smithwick began brewing his first Ales, although the Smithwick’s story started long before then.
He chose the site of an ancient monastery, St Francis Abbey in Kilkenny City, to position his brewery. John was inspired by a tradition of brewing on this site, the foundations of which were laid four centuries earlier.
Back in the 13th century the Franciscans established an Abbey, with its own well, on the banks of the River Nore in Kilkenny. Whilst brewing and barley cultivation are recorded in Irish Annals from the mists of time, the strong brewing tradition that exists in Kilkenny started with these monks who would have brewed their own light ale for their visitors, using water from St Francis' Well.
To this day the Abbey stands proudly at the heart of the brewery and continues to inspire our brewers.