Speyside

AN CNOC

The Knockdhu distillery is a whisky distillery in Knock, Banffshire owned by Inver House Distillers Limited.

The distillery was founded in 1893 by John Morrison, who bought the land from the Duke of Fife to produce whi sky for Haig’s after several springs on the southern slope of Knock Hill were discovered. The site was also chosen for its proximity to the Knock Station on the Banff branch line of the Great North of Scotland Railway (GNSR) between Aberdeen and Elgin. Not only was the new location convenient to the railway but it was also within a few miles of a district noted both for its barley and inexhaustible source of excellent peat. The distillery was built using local eye grey granite, with two steam heated stills. The two pot stills could turn out 2,500 gallons of spirit per week. It was also the first malt distillery built for the Distillers Company Ltd. It started production in 1894 and remained in continuous operation until 1931, when it was forced to close for a few years due to the economic depression. Wartime restrictions on barley forced a second closure from 1940-1945.

After the war, with the distillery connected to the national grid, the steam powered engine, which had been used since the its founding, was retired in 1947.

Knockdhu was closed in 1983, and was sold to Inver House in 1988, after which production resumed in February 1989. Various bottling ages are available the most popular being 12 years old, there is also an annual vintage bottled around 14–15 years old, a 16 year old (matured solely in second fill bourbon casks) and a 30 year old. Previously named Knockdhu after the distillery, the whisky was renamed anCnoc in 1994 to avoid confusion with Knockando.

Knockdhu Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky is currently bottled under the Gaelic name anCnoc meaning “the hill”.

http://ancnoc.com/

BENRIACH

The BenRiach Distillery is located in the ‘Heart of Speyside’, between the village of Rothes and the town of Elgin, in the North-East of Scotland. The Spey Valley, in which the BenRiach Distillery was built by John Duff in 1898, is home to many of Scotland’s great whiskies, but BenRiach has its own uniqueness borne from the particular methods and skills of the men who craft the whisky, the ingredients they use, the distinctive copper stills and the high quality barrels selected for maturation.

And, BenRiach boasts one further difference – standing apart from the other Spey Valley distilleries, the traditional floor maltings with their distinctive pagoda style chimneys can produce peated, malted barley, enabling the distillery to capture the defining taste of peat reek in a few of their special bottlings.

Deep in the musty darkness of the long, low traditional warehouses at the BenRiach distillery, row upon row of oak casks rest, slowly maturing. This is an uninterrupted inventory of fine Speyside Single Malt, dating back to 1966. The casks contain the highest quality whisky and many reveal ‘expressions’, which have taken the industry experts by surprise due to their complexity and subtleness. Some are no less than outstanding examples of the art of whisky production.

This whisky stock, reflecting the skill, knowledge and experience that has gone into the making of BenRiach is testimony to the many years stretching back to the 19th century during which the distillery built its reputation. Few distilleries in Scotland hold such a history and few today can have quite such an exciting future.

The barley harvested from the fields surrounding the distillery would be spread across the floors of the malting loft to germinate. Peat, cut from the hills, fired the kiln and produced the heat required to control the germination process, and the distinctive peat scented smoke would be seen curling upwards from the malting chimneys throughout the year.

The distillery manager would oversee the slow and deliberate crafting process of BenRiach whisky – managing the transformation from malted barley to wash, to distilled spirit and into high quality oak casks, in which the whisky would then mature. This was the beginning of the BenRiach story.

http://www.benriachdistillery.co.uk/

BENROMACH

Benromach is a Speyside distillery founded by Duncan McCallum and F.W. Brickman in 1898 and currently owned and run by Gordon and Macphail of Elgin. It is situated near Forres in Morayshire and is fed with spring water from the Chapelton Springs in the Romach Hills beside Forres.

Duncan MacCallum and F.W. Brickmann founded the Benromach Distillery Company in 1898. Duncan MacCallum had previously been working at the Glen Nevis Distillery in Campbeltown and FW Brickmann was a spirit broker in Leith, Edinburgh. Construction work started at the site of Benromach Distillery in 1898 however due to the depression in the Scotch Whisky industry in 1898 the distillery did not start producing whisky until 1900 but closed the same year due to a lack of money.

In 1911 Benromach was acquired by the London based Harvey McNair & Co who continued distilling until the onset of the First World War. After the war Benromach was acquired by Benromach Distillery Ltd and was run by this new private company until 1925. In 1938 Benromach was acquired by Associated Scottish Distilleries Ltd which later became a part of Scottish Malt Distillers Ltd. Between 1966 and 1974 the distillery was modernised and continued to run until 1983 when the distillery was officially closed.

In 1993 Gordon and MacPhail took over the site and in 1997 they started to restore the distillery to a working order. The design of the distillery was changed slightly to allow it to be operated by one man. Finally in 1998 the distillery was officially reopened by Charles, Prince of Wales and bottling of the new malt started in 2004.

At the World Whisky Awards 2014, Benromach 10 Years Old won gold in the “Best Speyside Single Malt – 12 Years and Under” category.

http://www.benromach.com/distillery

GLENDRONACH

In 1826 the exuberant and extroverted James Allardice founded the distillery and produced his ‘Guid GlenDronach’ single malt. Down the years, the distillery he created has thrived under the stewardship of far-sighted investors like Walter Scott in 1847 and Captain Charles Grant in 1920. In more recent times, GlenDronach was bought in 1960 by William Teacher & Sons.

But in 2008, nothing less than a complete renaissance began. The BenRiach Distillery Company became GlenDronach’s proud new owner.

While time can never stand still, the commitment of the team at GlenDronach will ensure that the distinctive practices that have always defined the distillery will live on – the most influential of these, its return to independent ownership.

The GlenDronach Distillery is famous for producing richly sherried single malt whiskies of inimitable and individual character. April 2009 marked the re-launch of the already popular 12 year old Original as well as the return on the iconic older expressions – the GlenDronach 15 and 18 year olds. Since then we have developed the range with superb expressions matured in the highest quality sherry casks.

http://glendronachdistillery.com/agepage.php

GLENFIDDICH

For 20 years William Grant nurtured a dream to make the ‘best dram in the valley’. With the help of his family, he finally achieved that vision.


In the summer of 1886, with his seven sons and two daughters by his side, William set out to fulfil a lifelong ambition. Together they began building his Distillery by hand, stone by stone. After a single year of work it was ready and William named it Glenfiddich, Gaelic for Valley of the Deer.

William’s passion, determination and pioneering spirit continues to guide us today. Glenfiddich is one of the few single malt distilleries to remain entirely family owned and is now the World’s Most Awarded Single Malt* Scotch Whisky, a true reflection of our founder’s innovative nature, passed down through the generations

Glenfiddich whisky is produced at the Glenfiddich Distillery in Dufftown. The water source is the Robbie Dhu springs. Glenfiddich is matured in oak casks such as rum casks from the Caribbean (in the case of 21 year old Gran Reserva), Bourbon whiskey barrels from America (Ancient Reserve), or sherry butts from Jerez in Spain.

The distillery uses 28 distinctively-shaped copper pot stills that are smaller than those now in use at most other distilleries. All are handmade and Glenfiddich employs a team of permanent craftsmen to maintain them.

Glenfiddich was the favourite whisky of fictional detective Inspector Morse, as well as his creator Colin Dexter.

In the movie The Dogs of War, Christopher Walken is seen carrying two bottles of Glenfiddich 10 Year Old in his luggage upon arrival to the fictional country of Zangaro.

In the 150th episode of Family Guy, Brian & Stewie, Brian Griffin keeps a bottle of what appears to be Glenfiddich 12 Year Old in a safe deposit box as a last drink should he intend to kill himself.

Since 1970, Glenfiddich has promoted the Glenfiddich Food and Drink Awards to honour distinguished writing and broadcasting in the fields of food and drink in the UK.

http://www.glenfiddich.com/

GLENROTHES

Established by the burn of Rothes in Speyside in 1879, The Glenrothes distillery has been producing its characteristic Speyside single Malt for over 130 years. The maturity of The Glenrothes is determined not by age, but by Vintage, resulting in some memorable moments, captured forever in specific expressions of this remarkable spirit

The Glenrothes is an award winning Speyside Single Malt Whisky of exceptional quality.

A combination of many factors including our unusually slow distillation process in tall copper pot stills deliver our characteristic sweet, fruity and elegant spirit.

Further flavours are derived from our extensive knowledge of maturation in oak casks.


Each expression has its own unique personality, underpinned by the distinctive, hallmark characteristics of the distillery – ripe fruits, citrus, vanilla and an exquisite spicy finish all encased in the creamiest of textures and with a complex and well-poised balance.

The Glenrothes Distillery lies on a tributary of the river Spey in Scotland. Speyside is universally acknowledged as the heartland of single malt whisky distillation.

The small Speyside town of Rothes is rather coy about what it does best. The only clue, if you drive down the narrow High Street with the window open, is the feint, sweet scent of distillation in the air.

Rothes has been making malt whisky since 1840 and though most is used in blends, it could if it wished produce enough to fill 50 million bottles of single malt each year. At dusk you get a better idea of scale when great clouds of steam can be seen billowing up from the town’s five
distilleries of Speyburn, Glan Grant, Glen Spey, Caperdonich and, of
course, Glenrothes.

Among them, tucked away in a tree-lined gorge beside the Rothes burn, is the one that proudly bears the town’s name; Glenrothes – built in1878 and arguably the best kept secret on Speyside, The Glenrothes hasbeen distilled here since 1879.

http://www.theglenrothes.com/

IMPERIAL

The Imperial distillery was a producer of single malt Scotch whisky located in Carron, Speyside that operated sporadically between 1897 and 1998. It was demolished in 2013. Imperial was mothballed and reopened several times in its hundred year history. The only official bottling was a 15 year expression, released in the mid 1990s. Chivas Brothkers, who owns the brand, plans to build a new distillery on the same site.

LINKWOOD

The Linkwood Distillery is a whisky distillery in Elgin, in the Speyside region of Scotland. The distillery was built in 1821 by Peter Brown with two stills, and started production in 1825 with a capacity of 4,500 litres per year. The distillery was operated by James Walker until Browns death in 1868, after which the distillery got under control of his son, William Brown.

Between 1872 and 1873 William Brown, the son of Peter Brown designed and built a new distillery with help of architect Methven, replacing the old one on the same location. The new distillery had a capacity of 227,000 liters per year. After William Browns death, the Linkwood-Glenlivet company was created by Browns family in 1898 and brought to the stock exchange. The distillery was then further extended to a capacity of 454,000 liters per year.

In 1902 Innes Cameron joined the Linkwood-Glenlivet company and became managing director of the Linkwood distillery until his death in 1932. By that time he was the largest shareholder of the company. The company was sold to Scottish Malt Distillers, which itself was bought by United Distillers.

After temporary closure between 1941 and 1945 as a result of barley shortage during the World War II, the distillery reopened in 1945 under Roderick Mackenzie, who led the distillery until 1963. Mackenzie who believed that all things in the distillery contributed to the final product. In 1962, Scottish Malt Distillers decided the distillery needed to be completely refurbished. Mackenzie oversaw the rebuilding of the distillery in his last year as general manager. The distillery was electrified, replacing the steam engine and water wheel that powered the distillery before, and all stills were replaced with exact replicas of the former stills.

In 1971 the a second distillery was built alongside the first, which became known as Linkwood B, with steam heated stills. The stills of the first distillery were converted by heated by steam as well. With the build of Linkwood B the two distilleries reached its current combined capacity of 2.5 million liters per year.

The distillery was mothballed between 1985 to 1990.

MORTLACH

The Mortlach distillery was founded in 1823 by James Findlater in Dufftown, Banffshire. The Mortlach distillery was the first distillery in Dufftown, pre-dating the next one (Glenfiddich) by over four decades.

On the Third of April 2013, Diageo announced a project to “substantially increase the capacity of the Mortlach distillery at Dufftown”.

SPEYBURN

The Speyburn Distillery was founded in 1897 by John Hopkins, who also owned the Tobermory Distillery on Mull. Many locals still refer to the whisky distillery as ‘The Gibbet’ [jib-it] because of its location near the ancient ‘Cnock na Croiche’ or ‘Hill of the Gibbet’ – an old word for gallows.

Hopkins was determined that whisky would be produced to mark the Jubilee year of Queen Victoria. Workers in heavy overcoats toiled through a blizzard on the night of the last day of the year, in a stillhouse without doors or windows, to ensure that one single barrel of 1897 vintage Speyburn was made.

Hopkins sold the distillery in 1916 to Distillers Company Limited, and from 1939 to 1947 the distillery was temporarily closed when the site was used to house two Scottish Artillery regiments. In 1962 Speyburn’s two stills were converted from coal-fired to indirect steam heating, and in 1967 the drum maltings ceased operation.

In 1992 the distillery passed into the hands of its current owners, Inver House Distillers

In spite of these changes, the distillery remains much the same as it was 100 years ago. Many of the original features are still intact – indeed still being used

Water is at the heart of Speyburn Single Malt. Speyburn is the only distillery to use water from the Granty Burn, a tributary of the River Spey famed for its purity and its world-class salmon fishing.

This, combined with time-honoured methods of distillation, gives Speyburn Single Malt its distinctively warm, full flavour.

http://www.speyburn.com/