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Poteen, or potheen, is a term now generally applied to illegally distilled Irish whiskey, but originally it was the Irish Gaelic word (poitīn, pronounced roughly /pəcheen/) for any strong liquor distilled at home. A poitīn was literally a ‘little pot’—that is, a small pot-still—appropriate for the domestic (and usually clandestine) production of whiskey; it was a diminutive form of pota, which was borrowed from English pot.

Subjects: Cookery, Food, and Drink.

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