It seems that every other week a new distillery is planned, granted permission or has been built up and down Scotland. In fact, from 2010 to 2015 the HMRC granted over 150 distilling licenses! Admittedly most of these licenses have been granted to companies planning to produce vodka and gin, however, there at least 40 of these distilleries that plan to produce our beloved single malt scotch. How can you keep with all these developments, how can you keep up to date with the all this new whisky? Fortunately, we are doing that for you – and in alphabetical order!
Borders Distillery is the second project of R&B Distillers and construction will begin once the distillery on the isle of Rasaay is complete. The site of the Borders distillery was chosen through a public poll, the small town of Peebles was chosen.
R&B distillers was founded in 2014 by Alasdair Day and Bill Dobbie. Whilst neither had any experience with whisky before, Day’s family’s involvement with whisky dates back over a 120 years. In 1895, Day’s great grandfather Richard Day, worked for the Coldstream grocer J&A Davidson. By 1923, Richard had taken over the business and was blending several styles of Scotch whisky. All of these recipes survive, kept in the company’s ‘cellar book’ or account book from 1899. In 2009, Day revived one of his great grandfather’s blends – the Tweedale. Day used the exact same nine distilleries that his great grandfather used!
Following the success of the Tweedale, Day decided to maintain momentum by constructing a distillery. Originally, Day had planned to build it in the Borders – maintaining a link to his whisky heritage. However, both Day and Dobbie were convinced to build Rasaay distillery first. Apart from this, there is not much information.
As with Rasaay distillery, R&B distillers have been selling a precursor whisky – Borders single grain. The Borders single grain contains fifty percent wheat and fifty percent malted barley from the same Highland distillery. Like Rasaay Whilst We Wait, the Borders single grain is representative of what the distillery shall make. As well as being representative in flavour some believe that the use of barley and wheat is an inference to what the distillery will produce. Whilst nothing has been said, the Borders will likely distil both malt and grain in copper pot stills in a nod to historical regional distillation techniques.
In July, 2016, Boban Costin and Elizabeth Sutherland submitted a proposal to the Highland and Island council to convert a number of building on the Dunrobin Castle site to a microdistillery and warehouse. This proposal was given the go-ahead by the council.
Dunrobin Castle is well suited for a distillery. The distillery would have access to the estate’s private water supply the Cagar Foesaig. As well as this the Dunrobin estate owns and managers some of the Highlands most arable farmland and already produce barley for a number of distillery. So we have an abundance of barley and a source of water from the estate mountain ranges, perfect for a distillery. To help the project along Costin and Sutherland have invited veteran Douglas Cruikshank, former Chivas Brothers director, to give guidance. So the natural ingredients and guidance of a man with forty-seven years of experience in the industry… Dunrobin is getting off to a good start!
Dunrobin plans to produce one single malt and two styles of gin! At first the distillery will produce 94,000 litres year from two copper pot stills. This is planned to rise to 300,000 litres a year!. Dunrobin is expected to be operational in June 2018.
One of the largest distilleries in our lists! The project is estimated at £40,000,000 and will provide fifty jobs for the region. The distillery will even have a two hundred seat restaurant!
Mossburn Distillers Ltd submitted a planning application in June, 2016, to construct a large scale distillery near the former Jedforest Hotel, Camptown. Permission was granted by the council in November shortly after. The project is divided into two phases. The first phase spans between 2017 – 2018, and will see the construction of a smaller distillery for education purposes. Once that is completed, the second phase will be the large scale distillery. This is planned to produce 1,000,000 bottles a year – around 2,500,000 a year!
Toulvaddie is a relatively new edition to the upcoming Scotch distilleries. However, it is already achieving a number of firsts. Toulvaddie is the first legal distillery in Fearn and Tarbart peninsula but more importantly it is the first Scotch distillery founded by a woman for over two hundreds years. The distillery is to be built on the site of the former Royal Navy Airbase, HMS owl, and will begin production in 2017. The distillery will produce 30,000 litres a year once built. In the meantime, Toulvaddie will be selling seventy litre casks and access to a Founders club. Toulvaddie will produce both peated and unpeated whisky.
Wolfburn distillery can be traced back to 1821 and ceased production in the 1850s. Whilst up and running, the distillery produced 125,000 litres a year – making it the largest distillery in Caithness.
In May, 2011, one of Wolfburn’s team went in search of the old distillery’s location in Thurso, Caithness. A 150 years had not been kind to the distillery and all that remained was a few discernible pieces of masonry. In 2012, Wolfburn purchased a parcel of land just a short walk from the original distillery site and ground was broken in August of that year. Wolfburn received help along the way, being given the old fermenters from the now defunct Caperdonich. It was on the 25th January that spirits started to flow from Wolfburn again. In 2016 Wolfburn released two whiskies, the first in March and the second in September.
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