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Mortlach

The Mortlach distillery lies in Speyside’s spiritual heartland, Dufftown, and holds the honour of being the first legal distillery to be built there. It was founded in 1823 - the year of the Excise Act - by James Findlater and, a year later, Donald Macintosh and Alexander Gordon joined him in ownership. Mortlach proffers a classic Speyside flavour, though the set up is far from typical; there are three wash stills and three spirit stills with a combined total capacity of 2.91 million litres annually.

Over the years, various distillery managers have altered the shape and design, something rather unheard of in Scotch whisky production. Mortlach boasts five onsite warehouses with a combined space for 21,000 casks. In 1831, the distillery was acquired by John Robertson for £270 and subsequently it was sold a year later to A & T Gregory. In 1937, Aberlour’s Grant brothers, John and James, acquired the distillery, dismantling the equipment for use at the 1840-built Glen Grant distillery. The Mortlach distillery lay silent.

John Alexander Gordon joined the brothers in 1842 and it was not until almost a decade later that Mortlach distilled once more. Whilst the stills enjoyed their proverbial sabbatical, the site was used not only as a brewery but also, rather curiously, as a church. When production resumed in 1851 the whisky was sold as The Real John Gordon. In 1923, John Walker and Sons acquired the distillery from then owner Alexander Cowie and two years later, they in turn became part of Distillers Company Limited, and subsequently Scottish Malt Distillers and then Diageo. There have been a few official releases as well as a selection of independent bottlings.

Mortlach Whisky Distillery

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About Mortlach Whisky Distillery

Distillery Number

01340 822100

Distillery Founded

1823

Distillery Capacity

2 910 000 litres

Distillery Status

Active

Distillery Owner

Diageo

Distillery Address

Dufftown, Banffshire

Distillery Website

www.malts.com

1823

The distillery is founded by James Findlater.

1824

Donald Macintosh and Alexander Gordon become part-owners.

1831

The distillery is sold to John Robertson for £270.

1832

A. & T. Gregory buys Mortlach.

1837

James and John Grant of Aberlour become part-owners. No production takes place at Mortlach as the equipment probably is dismantled and used in building Glen Grant Distillery.

1842

The distillery is now owned by John Alexander Gordon and the Grant brothers.

1851

Mortlach is once again an up and running distillery after having been used as a church and a brewery for some years. The whisky is sold under the name The Real John Gordon.

1853

George Cowie joins as part-owner with Gordon.

1867

John Alexander Gordon dies and Cowie becomes sole owner.

1895

George Cowie Jr. joins the company.

1897

The number of stills is increased from three to six.

1923

Alexander Cowie sells the distillery to John Walker & Sons.

1925

John Walker becomes part of Distillers Company Limited (DCL).

1930

The administration is transferred to Scottish Malt Distillers (SMD).

1964

Major refurbishment.

1968

Floor maltings ceases.

1996

Mortlach 1972 (23 years) is released as a Rare Malt. The distillery is renovated at a cost of £1.5 million.

1998

Mortlach 1978 (20 years) is released as a Rare Malt.

2004

Mortlach 1971, a 32 year old cask strength is released.

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Tasting Sets
An independent bottling of Mortlach single malt, bottled by Càrn Mòr. I guess you could call it Càrn Mòrtlach if your were at all interested in wordplay. Anyway, this 18 year old Mortlach matured in a...  More info
$170.35
This is a ten year old Mortlach bottled by Cooper's Choice in 2011.  More info
$84.08
This is Mortlach was bottled by Duncan Taylor for their Dimensions range. This whisky is bottled at 46%abv without chill-filtration or colouring.  More info
$96.57
A 14 year old Mortlach presented at medium strength by The Maltman. An outturn of 376 bottles from cask 10998.  More info
$102.56
A lovely, fragrant 13 year old Speyside single cask from Mortlach distillery here. Bottled by Hunter Laing in December 2013 for their Old Malt Cask range, the outturn was 319 bottles at 50% abv.  More info
$114.58
This twenty year old Mortlach was bottled as part of UDV's (now Diageo) Rare Malts collection in 1998 and is very rare - who'd have thunk it?  More info
$591.94
Single cask Mortlach, as bottled by the talented hands of Adelphi. This single malt matured in a refill ex-Sherry hogshead from 1987 to 2014 and was bottled at 26 years old with an ABV of 56.8%. Just...  More info
$231.63
This is a Wemyss bottling of Mortlach single malt Scotch whisky, taken from a single hogshead which matured the whisky from 1998 to 2013. It has been given the name Pastille Bouquet, which was...  More info
$112.37
A Directors' Cut bottling of Mortlach single malt Scotch whisky, distilled in February 1989 and bottled in March 2014. After spending 25 years in hogshead #10321, it has taken on rich, intriguing...  More info
$360.04
A half bottle of Mortlach 15 year old, this was matured in first fill and refill sherry casks before bottling by Gordon and MacPhail.  More info
$43.18
Hunter Laing will continue the Old Malt Cask range and this 18 year old Mortlach is mighty fine example. 279 bottles were produced from the refill hogshead.  More info
$138.72
A cask strength sherry-matured Mortlach from MacKillop's Choice. This was distilled on the 1st September 1989 and aged for 22 years in cask 3926 before bottling in March of 2012. Each bottle is...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
$184.19
Named Freshly Cut Grass, and surprisingly reminiscent of the quintessential Summer scent, this was distilled at the Mortlach distillery in 1990 before it was aged for 20 years in a single refill...  More info
$117.14
A 21 year old spicy, Sherried, toffeed Mortlach? Yes please! Bless those Douglas Laingers (Laingists? Laingites??). Matured in a single Sherry butt, 255 bottles were produced in 2013. Just look at the...  More info
$277.76
A full-bodied single malt from the Mortlach distillery, aged for 21 years in first fill and refill sherry casks before bottling by Gordon and MacPhail.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
$108.17
A 15 year old from the Mortlach distillery, aged in first fill and refill sherry casks before bottling for Gordon and MacPhail.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (3.5/5)
$68.64
Bottled by Signatory in 2011, this was distilled on the 25th February 1998 at Mortlach, before ageing in two hogsheads. A release of 887 bottles.  More info
$47.28
A single cask, sherry butt-matured Mortlach, distilled on the 1st October 1991, and aged for 19 years before bottling on the 21st October 2010.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
$153.01
This was distilled at Mortlach on the 17th September 1990, and aged in refill sherry butt number 6070, before bottling on the 1st February 2011. A release of 548 bottles.  More info
A 1991 Mortlach bottled for the (absolutely fantastic) London Restaurant, Bar, and Cigar Club 'The Boisdale'. Ask for the Rump Steak - Black and Blue, with truffle-mash. Tell them Master of Malt sent...  More info
A single cask Mortlach bottled under Berry's Own Selection by esteemed wine merchant Berry Brothers and Rudd. This was distilled in 1989 and bottled in 2010.  More info
$115.58
A 12 year old Mortlach with a lovely deep hue from sherry butt number 3554. This was distilled in July 1994 and bottled in May 2007 for the Old Malt Cask range. A release of 654 bottles.  More info
$60.81
A 15 year old Mortlach from Signatory. This was distilled on the 3rd June 1992 and aged in hogsheads 4985 and 4986 before bottling on the 8th April 2008. A release of 828 individually numbered...  More info
This was distilled in March of 1989 and aged for 21 years in refill hogshead number 6126 before bottling in April 2010 as part of a release of 250 bottles of single cask Mortlach.  More info
A single cask Mortlach. This was distilled in September 1997 and aged for 12 years in sherry butt number 6074 before bottling in April 2010. A release of 330 bottles, bottled by Douglas Laing.  More info
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