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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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The Lost Distilleries Blend
Maple Whiskey Liqueur
A fabulous cask strength Port Ellen aged in a single refill butt (cask 517) for a whopping 27 years. Bottling on the 28th September 2010 by Signatory. A release of 608 bottles.  More info
Distilled at Millburn in 1978 and aged for 30 years before bottling in 2008 for Gordon and MacPhail.  More info
$271.98
Distilled at Millburn in 1969 and aged for 35 years before bottling at cask strength for Diageo's Rare Malts range.  More info
From Signatory's Cask Strength Collection comes this fabulous 34 year old single cask Inverleven. It was distilled on the 14th September 1977 and was aged in bourbon barrel 3605 before bottling on the...  More info
$274.24
This Caperdonich was distilled in November 1972 and aged in cask 7440 for 38 years before bottling in May 2011. A release of 181 bottles from Duncan Taylor's Rarest of the Rare series.  More info
This was distilled at Caperdonich in 1970. The distilled was mothballed in 2002, so its whisky is becoming rather rare. This was aged in cask 4378 before bottling in 2008 by Adelphi as a release of...  More info
The closed Dallas Dhu distillery in Speyside produced this single malt Scotch whisky in 1979. Unfortunately they aren't around anymore to bottle it, but Gordon and Macphail have done that job and made...  More info
$281.27
Rosebank 25 Year Old
(70cl, 61.40%)
A cask strength official bottling from the Rosebank distillery, distilled in 1981 and matured for 25 years in refill Bourbon casks before bottling as a limited release of just 4,710 bottles.  More info
'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
Rare as hen's teeth, and a darn sight tastier. This 1975 St Magdalene was bottled by Gordon & MacPhail.  More info
$289.13
A 27 year old Port Ellen bottled under the Old Malt Cask label from Douglas Laing. It won't be around for ever, Port Ellen. And you'll miss it when it's gone so you will.  More info
A 28 year old single cask whisky from the now closed Glen Mhor distillery. This was distilled in 1982, aged in a single wine treated hogshead and bottled By Signatory on the 24th November 2010.  More info
$295.54
This is a superb single cask Caperdonich from Duncan Taylor's impressive Rarest of the Rare range. It was distilled in April 1992 before a 20 year maturation in cask 46215. It was bottled at natural...  More info
$300.73
A 24 year old official expression from the now silent Convalmore distillery, this bottling was distilled in 1978 and has been released at cask strength as part of a rare limited edition.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
A spicy, bourbon barrel-matured single cask Rare Ayrshire, aged for 36 years in barrel number 3416 before bottling in 2012.  More info
$317.94
A rare bottling from the closed distillery of Ladyburn in Ayrshire, aged for 37 years in a single bourbon barrel. An outturn of 183 natural cask strength bottles from Signatory.  More info
$317.94
Brechin 28 Year Old
(70cl, 53%)
Part of a release of just 2,040 bottles of Brechin (aka North Port). This was aged for 28 years before bottling at cask strength.  More info
A very rare edition of 28 year old single malt from the silent Glen Mhor distillery, bottled under Diageo's Rare Malts label.  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
$325.04
Distilled in October 1969 at the Caperdonich distillery, aged for 41 years in single cask 3254 and bottled for the Rarest of the Rare series in March 2011. A release of 176 bottles.  More info
Brora 25 Year Old
(70cl, 56.30%)
A rare 25 year old release from the Brora distillery; less than 3,000 bottles were filled. This single malt was matured in American and European oak and exudes nutty, winter spice notes.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
A 27 year old, single cask Port Ellen, need we say more? Well, just in case we'll add that it was distilled in Spring 1983 (just before the legendary distillery closed for good) and was bottled in...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
This was distilled at Glen Mhor on the 22nd September 1982, and it was aged for 29 years in hogshead 1604 before bottling by Signatory at natural cask strength.  More info
$341.19
27 year old Port Ellen distilled in 1982. This is rare whisky, aged in Bourbon casks and finished in ChÔteau D'Yquem sauternes barrels. This was bottled at the Bruichladdich distillery in 2009, and is...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
This was distilled at the Caperdonich distillery in October of 1969, and it was aged in cask 3245 for 41 years before bottling by Duncan Taylor for their Rarest of the Rare collection in May of 2011...  More info
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