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The Lost Distilleries

The lost distilleries of Scotland are almost always the most popular and highly sought after amongst whisky collectors and the cognoscenti. Their whisky has become legendary, and not just for its flavour, but for the fact it is incredibly rare and hard to find, though it was once very different...

Scotland was once home to hundreds of distilleries, and in the peak of the 19th century, there were over two hundred of them in operation! This number quickly started to dwindle, as distilleries started closing for various economic reasons.

US Prohibition killed off a number of distilleries whose main income came from export to America, and shortly after the UK was stricken by the economic depression of the 1920s and 1930s. After the Second World War around 70 distilleries closed down for good, though as the UK slowly started to build itself back up again the popularity and growth of whisky continued to increase up until the 1980s, when economic difficulties forced the industry to make cut backs. At that time, blended Scotch was the most popular style of whisky, whilst single malts only really become popular comparatively recently. The result of this was that when cut backs were made, it was done with blended whisky in mind. Smaller distilleries closed, as did those whose whisky didn’t make much of an impact when used as a blending component.

The whisky industry is back on the rise now, and increased interest in single malts has even brought about the reopening of several distilleries. With this in mind, the lost distilleries of the 20th century will always have a special place in our hearts, distilleries like Rosebank, St Magdalene, the intensely smoky Brora , Dallas Dhu , and the epic Port Ellen, amongst many, many others...

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An 11 year old from the now mothballed Imperial distillery. This was distilled in 1998 and bottled by Duncan Taylor in 2010 for their NC2 range (non chillfiltered and non caramel coloured).  More info
A stupendous single cask whisky from SMWS from a secret distillery (let's just say its R -Bank. No, that's too obvious, let's call it Rose-B). This is a berry-fruit-rich whisky from the now closed...  More info
$320.79
A rare single cask Rosebank, bottled in 2000 by Signatory. This is a fine, oak matured Lowland whisky, a favourite of Jim Murray, which is getting hard to find given the sad and silent state of the...  More info
$177.28
Rosebank 8 Year Old
(75cl, 40%)
An ultra rare 8 year old from the closed Rosebank distillery. Whisky from Rosebank has become legendary for its incredible Lowland character. This was bottled for The Distillers Agency.  More info
$532.57
Littlemill 8 Year Old
(70cl, 40%)
Littlemill has since been closed and demolished and will inevitably become rare in time. This is a great chance to try this classic Littlemill bottling.  More info
$192.44
This was distilled at Convalmore in 1981, and aged for 17 years before bottling by Gordon and MacPhail in 1998 for their Connoisseurs Choice range.  More info
A stunning 26 year old from the Port Ellen distillery - one of the most legendary distilleries in the world. This was distilled in February 1982 and aged for 26 years in sherry butt number 4447 before...  More info
A rare vintage from a closed distillery (Glenugie was dismantled in 1983). This was distilled in 1970 and bottled in 2009 for Gordon and MacPhail's exclusive Rare Old range.  More info
A complex, rich single malt, bottled by Gordon and MacPhail. Port Ellen has become a legendary distillery, known for its stunning peaty flavours.  More info
$226.47
A rare 1972 vintage from one of Scotland's lost distilleries. This was matured in a standard cask before a three month finish in a special sherry Octave. This gave the whisky some added richness...  More info
A well-loved regular of Diageo's Special Releases, single malt from the closed Brora distillery is hugely sought after by connoisseurs and collectors alike. For the 2014 Special Releases, this Brora...  More info
To say bottlings of Port Ellen are sought after is just a bit of an understatement. While the distillery remains silent, and has done since 1983, releases like this rare Gordon & MacPahil Connoisseurs...  More info
$816.15
A vintage Gordon & MacPhail of Brora single malt Scotch whisky. It was distilled in 1982, a year before the distillery was mothballed. It was bottled as part of the Connoisseurs Choice in 1999. Always...  More info
$497.13
A sumptuous Speyside single malt which slumbered in Sherry butts from 1999 to 2013. This Caperdonich makes for a fine addition to Gordon & MacPhail's Connoisseurs Choice.  More info
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This Rare Old bottling from Gordon & MacPhail features single malt Scotch whisky from the closed Glenesk distillery. It was distilled way back in 1979 and bottled in 2013. As with many closed...  More info
$559.70
An independently bottled single malt Scotch whisky from the legendary Port Ellen distillery on the Island of Islay. It was distilled in June 1982 and bottled in March 2014 for the Mackillop's Choice...  More info
$954.51
A 1976 vintage from Glenury Royal, this was bottled as part of Gordon and MacPhail's Connoisseurs Choice range.  More info
From Lombard's Jewels of Scotland range. This was distilled at Brora in 1982 and bottled in 2004. John Hansell of Malt Advocate rated it with a very high 95 points!  More info
Bottled by up-and-coming independent bottler Lady of the Glen, this 19 year old Caperdonich single malt Scotch whisky is very promising if it indicates how good their future releases will be. It was...  More info
Speyside whisky bottled by Gordon and Macphail. One of the rarer whiskies in our collection.  More info
$66.02
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A rare 43 year old from the Glenugie distillery, which closed over 25 years ago!  More info
Port Ellen alert! Port Ellen alert! That's right, we've got a Gordon & MacPhail bottling of single malt from the closed distillery on Islay, distilled in 1979, matured in refill Sherry butts and...  More info
$1010.75
You'd not be blamed for not knowing about Glenury Royal whisky, as the distillery was closed in 1985 and releases of their whisky are rather scarce. However, Gordon & MacPhail got their hands on a...  More info
$397.99
'Ayrshire' single malt, as you may know, comes from the... well, the clue's in the label design really. A burning lady? A burning lady in a burn? A lady-burn? Yes, that. Apologies for it being so...  More info
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