Gordon & MacPhail has unveiled images of the new distillery the company hopes to build in the Cairngorm National Park in Scotland.
The distillery, which would be built at Craggan near Grantown-on-Spey, has been designed to take advantage of stunning views across the River Spey to the Cairngorm mountains.
The circular design of the building would disguise much of the day to day working of the distillery within the service yard. Sedum roofs will help the buildings blend into the surrounding environment when viewed from higher ground.
More than 150 people visited the exhibition and viewed the plans, which included computer generated images of the distillery and associated buildings.
The family owned firm, who also own Benromach Distillery at Forres, announced last year that it hopes to build a second distillery at Craggan. The production rate will start at 375,000 litres per year, although the distillery will be capable of producing 2 million litres of alcohol in the longer term.
Response locally to the plans has been overwhelmingly positive. Ewen Mackintosh, Gordon & MacPhail’s managing director, said they had been delighted at the response at an event held as part of the planning process. “We’re really pleased at the number of people who came along to see our plans, we couldn’t have asked for a warmer welcome. People are saying how excited they are to see a distillery being proposed for the area as they believe it has the potential to support Grantown-on-Spey as a destination and encourage visitors to stay longer in the town.”
Gordon & MacPhail has been working closely with architects NORR to create the designs for the distillery, the first new build Scotch malt whisky distillery to be built in the Cairngorm National Park.
Members of the fourth generation of the Urquhart family, owners of Gordon & MacPhail, were at the exhibition to hear the views of the local community and emphasise the company’s commitment to the area.
As Stuart Urquhart, Gordon & MacPhail Operations Director, explained: “We are a longstanding family-owned business with strong roots and commitment to the north of Scotland. Building and operating our second distillery is part of our generational plan to grow a long-term sustainable business, whilst continuing to be part of the fabric of the local community.”
Gordon & MacPhail is a family owned business which has built its knowledge and experience of the Scotch whisky industry over a 120-year history. In 1993, the Urquhart family realised a long-held ambition when they acquired Benromach Distillery and reopened it after extensive refurbishment in 1998.
A member of the world famous Malt Whisky Trail, Benromach Distillery attracts around 15,000 visitors to the area every year, a figure they aim to increase further with the opening of their Red Door Gin visitor experience this year.
Loch Lomond Group has launched the Littlemill 40 Year Old Celestial Edition (46.8% ABV) in the UK, the oldest expression ever to be released from the now lost Littlemill distillery.
The precious liquid, distilled by what is rumoured to be one of the world’s oldest distilleries, is available now priced at £6,000. Only 250 bottles will be produced in total, making this a much sought-after collector’s item.
Littlemill 40 Year Old Celestial Edition celebrates the life’s work of Littlemill owner Duncan Thomas. The spirit represents the culmination of his knowledge and experience and captures the spirit of his pioneering distilling process.
The stunning presentation box captures an exact map of the night sky seen above Littlemill Distillery on the evening that the liquid was barrelled. Inside, the hand-faceted Glencairn Crystal decanter, each engraved with its unique bottle number, is finished with a solid brass stopper made in Glasgow. Each box also contains a 5cl vial of the 40 Year Old liquid, for those who would like to sample the whisky while keeping the bottle intact.
Duncan Thomas was a true pioneer of Scotch Whisky, pushing boundaries and introducing innovation that would long outlive him. One of his more lasting legacies was the introduction of the straight necked pot still with rectifying heads, that made it possible to create variations on each spirit he produced, allowing him to retain control of the character of the final liquid. This philosophy was embraced by Japanese distilleries in the East, and to mark this, the 40 Year Old box shows the star chart on the night that the spirit was laid to rest, charting the two paths of Duncan Thomas and Japanese Whisky experimentation.
Michael Henry, Master Blender at Loch Lomond Group, said: “The Littlemill 40 year old Celestial Edition is a fitting way to celebrate the legacy left by Duncan Thomas, and the truly exceptional liquid is worthy of his name.”
Rumoured to be one of the oldest in Scotland, and possibly even the world, the Littlemill distillery has a long and fascinating history. Officially established and producing whisky legally from 1772 in Bowling on the banks of the River Clyde near Glasgow, the distillery fell silent in 1994 and was subsequently destroyed by fire in 2004, never to produce a drop again.
Littlemill’s rich history includes a number of owners over its lifetime and it was notably one of the first distilleries to have a female licensee, Jane MacGregor, in 1823. In the 1930s, the distillery was known for triple distillation before moving to the more traditional double distillation now associated with Scotch whisky.
In 1931, under the stewardship of the American Duncan Thomas, Littlemill was at the forefront of still innovation with technical designs that could create three styles of single malts from full-bodied to light. These innovative stills provided the inspiration for the Loch Lomond Distillery, which was opened in the 1960s.
Rare amongst the Lowland malts in using a Highland water source, as well as peat from Stornoway and Perthshire, Littlemill whiskies are renowned for a subtly floral, vanilla-rich sweetness.
Littlemill 40 Year Old Celestial Edition is available to buy from specialists whisky stockists.
For further information visit www.lochlomondgroup.com
Littlemill 40 Year Old Celestial Edition Tasting Notes
Issued by Big Partnership on behalf of The Loch Lomond Group.
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Laphroaig Single Malt Scotch Whisky, distributed by Maxxium UK, has been awarded the Whisky Visitor Attraction of the Year in Whisky Magazine’s global Icons of Whisky 2014 competition.
The annual industry awards, organised by Whisky Magazine, recognise the very best people and places in the whisky industry around the world. The awards involve country heats to find the best companies in the leading whisky nations of the world, which then compete against each other for the overall Icons of Whisky.
Laphroaig Distillery Manager, John Campbell said: “As the No.1 selling Islay single malt whisky we are thrilled to be recognised as one of Whisky Magazine’s prestigious global Icons of Whisky. For nearly 200 years, we’ve worked hard to ensure that the distillery reflects the same distinctiveness one would find in a bottle of Laphroaig. From guided tours to our Friends of Laphroaig loyalty program, we welcome visitors into the family by gifting a plot of Islay land they can call their own while offering a truly memorable experience.”
The Whisky Magazine editorial panel noted that the Laphroaig Distillery “offers a warm welcome to visitors from across the world. From a walk through tour to owning your piece of Islay, Laphroaig has stamped its mark on the visitor [centre] experience.”
The Laphroaig Distillery also won the Scottish Icons of Whisky last year and is the current holder of the Drammie award for best distillery tour in the world, which it has won for two consecutive years.
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