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The Glenlivet

After the 1823 Excise Act, George Smith became the first distiller in the Highlands to obtain a license for distillation and, in 1824, he established The Glenlivet on what was once a farm distillery called Upper Drummin. Many of the neighbouring distilleries were illegally run and involved in smuggling. They became indignant, for George Smith was running Glenlivet by legal means. Such was the tempest of their fury, George had to carry a pair of pistols for protection.

Originally 'Gow', the family name became the more Anglo-sounding 'Smith' following Bonnie Prince Charlie’s 1746 defeat at the battle of Culloden. The Gows changed their name to escape the resultant subjugation which ensued. The Glenlivet has always been a name associated with quality, to such a degree that other distilleries would use the name, no matter how distant they were from the Livet glen.

To help preserve his brand, George Smith’s son, John Gordon Smith, applied for sole rights to the name, which were granted in 1884. The name still crops up elsewhere. However, by law, other brands must hyphenate it with their own names and cannot use it solely. The large distillery, with a capacity of 5.8 million litres per annum, is owned by Chivas Brothers, themselves a subsidiary of Pernod Ricard. Today, The Glenlivet is the world’s second best-selling single malt and is the top seller in the US.

The Glenlivet Whisky Distillery

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About The Glenlivet Whisky Distillery

Distillery Number

01340 821720

Distillery Founded

1824

1859

1859 – Upper Drummin and Cairngorm close and all equipment is brought to Minmore which is renamed The Glenlivet Distillery.

Distillery Capacity

5 800 000 litres

Distillery Status

Active

Distillery Address

Ballindalloch, Banffshire AB37 9DB

Distillery Owner

Chivas Brothers

Distillery Address

Minmore, Ballindalloch, Banffshire

Distillery Website

www.theglenlivet.com

1817

George Smith inherits the farm distillery Upper Drummin from his father Andrew Smith who has been distilling on the site since 1774.

1840

George Smith buys Delnabo farm near Tomintoul and leases Cairngorm Distillery. His son William takes over operations at Upper Drummin.

1845

George Smith leases three other farms, one of which is situated on the river Livet and is called Minmore.

1846

William Smith develops tuberculosis and his brother John Gordon moves back home to assist his father. Sales of Smith’s Glenlivet increases steadily and neither Upper Drummin nor Cairngorm Distillery can meet demand.

1864

George Smith cooperates with the whisky agent Andrew P. Usher and exports the whisky with great success.

1871

George Smith dies and his son John Gordon takes over.

1880

John Gordon Smith applies for and is granted sole rights to the name The Glenlivet. Only Glenlivet Distillery may thus use the name. All distilleries wishing to use Glenlivet in their names must from now hyphenate it with their brand names.

1890

A fire breaks out and some of the buildings are replaced.

1896

Another two stills are installed.

1901

John Gordon Smith dies.

1904

John Gordon’s nephew George Smith Grant takes over.

1921

Captain Bill Smith Grant, son of George Smith Grant, takes over.

1953

George & J. G. Smith Ltd merges with J. & J. Grant of Glen Grant Distillery and forms the company Glenlivet & Glen Grant Distillers Ltd.

1966

Floor maltings closes.

1970

Glenlivet & Glen Grant Distillers Ltd merges with Longmorn-Glenlivet Distilleries Ltd and Hill Thomson & Co. Ltd to form The Glenlivet Distillers Ltd.

1978

Seagrams buys The Glenlivet Distillers Ltd. A visitor centre opens.

1996

– The visitor centre is expanded, and a multimedia facility installed.

2000

French Oak 12 years and American Oak 12 years are launched

2001

Pernod Ricard and Diageo buy Seagram Spirits & Wine. Pernod Ricard thereby gain control of the Chivas group.

2004

This year sees a lavish relaunch of

2005

Two new duty-free versions are introduced – The Glenlivet 12 year old First Fill and Nadurra, a 16 year old non chill-filtered matured in first-fill bourbon casks. The 1972 Cellar Collection (2,015 bottles) is launched.

2006

Nadurra 16 year old cask strength and 1969 Cellar Collection are released. Glenlivet sells more than 500,000 cases for the first time in one year.

2007

Glenlivet XXV is released.

Reproduced from the Malt Whisky Yearbook 2009 with the kind permission of Mr Ingvar Ronde

The Lost Distilleries Blend
Filliers Distillery
Blend Your Own Whisky
Monkey Shoulder Whisky
That Boutique-y Whisky Company
Mature Your Own Kit
A cask strength 40 year old from The Glenlivet, a winner of a Gold Medal at the 2005 International Spirits Challenge.  More info
Distilled in 1972 and bottled on the 24th August 2005, a rare cask strength release from The Glenlivet.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
$734.23
An ice bucket off of them there Glenlivet. Use to store ice and chilled water.  More info
$17.71
A very rare 11 year old Glenlivet from a single cask. A fraction of the price that an official release would be, bottled in 2013 by Douglas Laing.  More info
$90.95
A barely believable 1977 (!) Glenlivet from top-notch bottler Wemyss. Astonishing stuff and only 149 bottles available!  More info
$226.47
A Glenlivet standing strong at an astonishing 52.5% after a full 30 years in cask 6669. Stunning Speyside whisky.  More info
$194.57
The Glenlivet Alpha
(70cl, 50%)
Strictly 1 per customer

Here, we have something unique. A limited release of 3,350 bottles (only 600 in the UK!) of pure mystery and intrigue. The label says "from The Glenlivet Distillery", and at...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
$156.49
A 16 year old Glenlivet from Signatory. Releases from this distillery are getting rarer, peeps… This one was matured in a single first fill Sherry butt. Yummers.  More info
$75.64
A 31 year old single cask whisky from the legendary Glenlivet distillery in Speyside. Bottled at cask strength by Signatory, this fantastic single malt from cask 9631 is sure to be mightily popular. A...  More info
$224.89
This was distilled at the Glenlivet distillery in 1973 before a 38 year maturation in a single cask (number 10658). It was bottled for Berry Brothers and Rudd in 2012 and it comes at natural cask...  More info
$259.69
This is a Director's Cut bottling of a sherry cask Glenlivet bottled at 35 years of age by Douglas Laing. This is a fresh and fruity cask-strength bottling with great depth of flavour.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
$335.67
This is a sherry cask matured Glenlivet bottled at 11 years of age by Douglas Laing for their Old Malt Cask range.  More info
$86.92
This is an excellent single cask bottling of one of the world's best selling single malt whiskies. Signatory have bottled this Glenlivet at a natural cask strength of 53.5% without chill-filtration or...  More info
$240.09
This is a thirty-three year old bottling of the world famous Glenlivet by Douglas Laing's Old Malt Cask range.

The Old Malt Cask range began as a release of fifty bottlings in 1998 to commemorate...  More info
$244.65
From the Signatory Cask Strength Collection comes this fourteen year old Glenlivet, bottled from its sherry cask just six days before it turned fifteen.  More info
$115.64
A single cask, cask-strength Glenlivet from the Nadurra range - aged for 16 years in a bourbon barrel before bottling in September 2011. This is Batch 0911P. Stunning stuff.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
$79.73
This Glenlivet was bottled for Gordon and MacPhail’s Distillery Range and is an impressively aged whisky from the famous distillery of Glenlivet.  More info
$363.19
This is a 1966 Glenlivet from Gordon and MacPhail's Distillery Range. Perfect for reminiscing about a certain World Cup victory...  More info
$377.00
Distilled in 1961, this is a very rare and collectible bottle of Glenlivet from Gordon and MacPhail's "Smith's Glenlivet" range. Full-bodied with a lovely rich, malty flavour...  More info
$481.72
This thirty-eight year old Glenlivet was bottled in 2012 without chill filtration by Berry Brothers and Rudd of St James' London.  More info
$252.35
This Glenlivet is packing an impressive thirty-seven years of cask ageing and was bottled by Berry Brothers and Rudd of St James' London. Glenlivet has been legally distilling whisky since 1823 and is...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
$205.75
A 16 year old Glenlivet distilled in September 1995 and aged in a single sherry butt before bottling in March 2012. A release of just 299 bottles from Douglas Laing's Old Malt Cask range.  More info
$112.68
This is an old edition of the lovely Glenlivet 12 year old. Aged in a mix of casks, this is a classic Speyside dram with oodles of honey and orchard fruit. Beautiful.

This is a rare, auction item...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
$96.59
This is a rare Glenlivet bottled at cask-strength without chill-filtration. This whisky was matured in a second fill hogshead cask which only yielded 307 bottles of this excellent Speyside whisky.  More info
$322.14
A gorgeously dark, sherry-butt-matured Glenlivet, distilled in September 2001 and aged for 10 years before bottling in February 2012. A single cask release of just 387 bottles from the Douglas Laing...  More info
$74.93
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