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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


Distillery Capacity

2 910 000 litres

Distillery Status


Distillery Owner


Distillery Address

Dufftown, Banffshire

Distillery Website


The distillery is founded by James Findlater.


Donald Macintosh and Alexander Gordon become part-owners.


The distillery is sold to John Robertson for £270.


A. & T. Gregory buys Mortlach.


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.


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


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.


George Cowie joins as part-owner with Gordon.


John Alexander Gordon dies and Cowie becomes sole owner.


George Cowie Jr. joins the company.


The number of stills is increased from three to six.


Alexander Cowie sells the distillery to John Walker & Sons.


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


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


Major refurbishment.


Floor maltings ceases.


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


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


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

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From Signatory's Un-Chillfiltered Collection comes a 17 year old Mortlach single malt Scotch whisky, drawn from two hogshead casks. This whisky was distilled in June 1997 and bottled in November 2014...  More info
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:  (5 Reviews)
10 year old Mortlach single malt Scotch whisky, bottled for Langside's Hepburn's Choice range. In 2004, the whisky was filled into a refill hogshead and set aside to age. In 2015, the cask was cracked...  More info
A very handsome independent bottling of single malt Scotch whisky from the Mortlach distillery, well known for their intense, meaty expressions. This is a Gordon & MacPhail bottling of Mortlach single...  More info
Single cask Mortlach single malt, bottled by Signatory without any chill-filtration whatsoever. This Speyside whisky was distilled in October 1997 and left to age in a single hogshead cask for 17...  More info
A Hepburn's Choice bottling of 9 year old Mortlach single malt Scotch whisky. This was distilled back in 2005 and left to mature in a single refill hogshead until 2014, when it was bottled with an...  More info
If you know (and love) Mortlach whisky for its well-Sherried qualities, this Douglas Laing Xtra Old Particular bottling might interest you quite a bit. It contains 22 year old Mortlach single malt...  More info
User Rating:  (1 Review)
Marvellous Mortlach single malt Scotch whisky, bottled for the Strictly Limited range by Càrn Mòr. This natural colour, non-chill-filtered indie bottling was distilled back in 1998 and left to mature...  More info
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
A Mortlach single malt Scotch whisky, bottled by Duncan Taylor for the Octave range. It was distilled in 1997 and bottled in 2014. Before it was bottled, it was finished in tiny Octave sherrywood...  More info
7 year old Mortlach single malt Scotch whisky, bottled for the Hepburn's Choice range by Langside. After being distilled in 2007, the whisky was filled into a refill hogshead, where it slumbered for 7...  More info
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
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
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
This is a 16 year old Mortlach from Carn Mor's strictly limited range. It was distilled in 1996 and aged in two hogsheads before bottling in 2012.  More info
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
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
A 14 year old Mortlach presented at medium strength by The Maltman. An outturn of 376 bottles from cask 10998.  More info
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
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
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
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:  (3 Reviews)
This indie bottling of Mortlach was distilled in 1998, two years after the distillery was refurbished. This release is made with whisky drawn from two hogshead casks by Càrn Mòr in 2014. 517 bottles...  More info
This is a ten year old Mortlach bottled by Cooper's Choice in 2011.  More info
While a vast majority of Mortlach whisky finds its was into Johnnie Walker blends, a small amount of it escapes in these big, wooden things called "casks" to be enjoyed as a single malt. This one is a...  More info
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