About the Author

Mark McLaughlin

One of Ireland’s most passionate advocates for Irish Whiskey and the Irish Pub. Having spent the past 15 years chopping and changing between the Hospitality, Retail and Irish Whiskey Brands, Mark has one of the most diverse skill sets working within the Industry in Ireland today.

Having worked directly for Paddy Irish Whiskey & Bushmills Irish Whiskey in the past, and represented brands such as Powers, Tullamore D.E.W, and many more in a private capacity, Mark is one of the most seasoned Irish Whiskey professionals under 30 working in Ireland.

Throughout his career he has had the opportunity to work with, educate, and provide consult to many of Ireland’s top Whiskey Bars, Whiskey Shops and more recently some of Ireland’s newest Whiskey Brands. He has never been one to shy away from being critical, and with the knowledge that he holds himself to the highest standard, he continues to try and play a role in pushing the industry forward.

His mission is to have as positive an impact on the Irish Whiskey industry as it has had on him.

Career Development

His journey with Irish Whiskey began in the Multi-Award Winning Irish Whiskey Bar, Garavans Bar, Galway, before beginning to hone his expertise as a member of The Celtic Whiskey Shop in Dublin. Here he met his current Best Man(at least until the wedding) and fellow Irish whiskey professional Stephen Magennis who pushed him to focus on learning & developing unparalleled knowledge of the Irish Whiskey category & spirits in general.

After this, a short stint in sales with Bushmills Irish Whiskey led to a return to retail with the famed Mitchell & Son Wine Merchants, where at just 24 years old he designed & delivered Ireland’s first Introduction to Irish Whiskey Course, with 4 modules based over 4 weeks. On his second offering of the course, he found his classroom full of Bartenders and graduates beginning their journey with Irish Whiskey Brands in the USA.

From here, he continued in retail for the next 2 years before taking a step back into the brand world with Hi-Spirits Ireland, a subsidiary of American spirits giant, Sazerac. Working here to re-invigorate the Paddy Irish Whiskey brand, he was exposed to what New Product Development entails, brand launches across US states, and further honing his presentation skills.

Although as amazing as the brand work was, there was always the thorn in the side that is sales, with pointless conversations going around in circles with publicans driving him mad, he decided he’d focus on educating people with a training and development role with The Chawke Pub Group.

Here he is driving the Irish Whiskey program in Searsons Bar, while attempting to standardise the services levels across all 10 venues of the Group, and continuing to focus on the personal development of the staff’s sales skills and product knowledge. His passion for educating people continues to flourish while developing the management skill set that will solidify his future.

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