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Balblair

One of Scotland’s oldest distilleries, Balblair was founded in 1790 by John Ross. The distillery lies in Edderton in the Northern Highlands, surrounded by rugged mountains, from whence the Allt Dearg - Balblair’s water source - springs. Following John Ross’s death in 1836, the distillery was passed down to his son, Andrew Ross. In 1872, he resited the distillery further up the hills on which it sits and converted the old buildings into warehousing facilities.

There is evidence that illicit distillation was carried out in the area of Edderton in the mid eighteenth century. The area was known as the ‘Parish of the Peats’ in reference to the prolific distillation and the abundance of peat in the surrounding soil. The distillery was forced to close during the First World War and did not reopen until 1949, a year after it was acquired for £48,000 by Keith-based lawyer, Robert ‘Bertie’ Cumming. Cumming ran the distillery until his retirement in 1970. In 1996, the distillery was sold by Allied Domecq to its current owners, Inver House Distillers. Just fifteen percent of Balblair’s 1.33 million litre capacity is sold as single malt, though there are many independent bottlings as well as a good range of official bottlings.

Balblair Whisky Distillery

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About Balblair Whisky Distillery

Distillery Number

01862 821273

Distillery Capacity

1 330 000 litres

Distillery Founded

1790

Distillery Status

Active

Distillery Address

Edderton, Ross-Shire

Distillery Owner

Inver House Distillers (Thai Beverages plc)

Distillery Website

www.balblair.com

1790

The distillery is founded by John Ross.

1824

The son Andrew Ross starts taking over, but moves to Brora after a couple of years and John Ross takes over again.

1836

The founder John Ross dies and Andrew Ross takes over with the help of his sons.

1872

New buildings replace the old.

1873

Andrew Ross dies and his son James takes over.

1894

Balnagowan Estate signs a new lease for 60 years with Alexander Cowan. He builds a new distillery, a few kilometres from the old.

1911

Cowan is forced to cease payments and the distillery closes. The staff sell out the whole stock in the 20-year period until 1932.

1941

Balnagowan Estate goes bankrupt and the distillery is put up for sale.

1948

The lawyer Robert Cumming from Keith buys Balblair for £48 000.

1949

Production restarts.

1970

Cumming sells Balblair to Hiram Walker. A third still is installed.

1988

Allied Distillers become new owners through the merger between Hiram Walker and Allied Vintners.

1996

Allied Domecq sells the distillery to Inver House Distillers.

2000

Balblair Elements and the first version of Balblair 33 years are launched.

2001

Thai company Pacific Spirits (part of the Great Oriole Group) takes over Inver House.

2004

Balblair 38 years is launched.

2005

12 year old Peaty Cask, 1979 (26 years) and 1970 (35 years) are launched.

2006

InverHouse changes owners when International Beverage Holdings acquires Pacific Spirits UK.

2007

Three new vintages replace the entire former range.

2008

Vintage 1975 is released.

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Origin Gin
Balblair 1975
(70cl, 46%)
Bottled in 2007 having been distilled in 1975, this Balblair single malt was aged in European oak casks that previously held maturing sherry.  More info
$292.38
A 40 year old bottling from Gordon and MacPhail, distilled in 1966 at the Balblair distillery in Edderton, a rich whisky with both floral notes and winter spice and a good helping of cereal notes.  More info
$332.76
A 1973 'vintage' Balblair from Gordon and MacPhail's Private Collection. From an outturn of but 385 bottles, this single malt was aged in sherry casks and pertains rich coffee and oak notes.  More info
A 10 year old Highlander from the Balblair distillery in Edderton and bottled by Gordon and MacPhail. The Balblair distillery tends to produce whiskies that have character beyond their years and this...  More info
A very old Balblair, bottled by Gordon and MacPhail. This was distilled in 1969 and bottled in 2008.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
$293.69
Distilled at Balblair in April 1990 and aged for 17 years in refill butt number 3930 before bottling in October 2007 by Douglas Laing. A release of 743 bottles.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (3.5/5)
20 year old single cask Balblair, distilled on the 13th June 1990, aged in sherry butt number 166 (as you'll note from the rich colour), and bottled for the Bladnoch forum on the 14th June 2010.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
The 2000 vintage from Balblair was released in 2010, and it was matured in first fill American Oak casks.  More info
$51.44
Balblair 1978
(70cl, 46%)
A wonderful Balblair, the 1978 vintage was aged in American oak bourbon barrels. It's sweet, spice and full bodied. Delish!  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
A very old Old Malt Cask bottling, this is the first we've seen from the range not to be bottled at 50%. In this case, we suspect because it would have been impossible - after 35 years in the cask...  More info
This is an old Balblair bottled by the chaps at Gordon and MacPhail all for your delectation!  More info
$242.88
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