Bushmills is an ancient distillery with roots a thousand years old and maybe even more. The army of Henry II loved to drink Bushmills but it was not until 1608 that the distillery became officially licensed and recognized by King James I, and not until 1784 that it was registered as a company. The Irish diaspora carried the traditions of Bushmills to America and the new world, as did Bushmills victories at international spirit and whiskey competitions. The Old Bushmills Distillery, a world heritage site, is Ireland's oldest working distillery.
At one time there were many hundreds of different Irish whiskeys. Over the years these have disappeared. Only Bushmills, the oldest and a handful of others have remained which is why Bushmills is oldest because it is the best, not best because it is oldest. Another unique aspect of the Old Bushmills Distillery is that malt distilling, blending, maturation and bottling are all carried out on the same site