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The Macallan

In 1824, the Macallan distillery was licensed to Alexander Reid, but under a different name; it started life as Elchies Distillery. Macallan sits in close proximity to a ford across the river Spey, the site originally held a farm distillery, which was frequented by cattle drovers crossing the ford. The distillery was expanded toward the end of the nineteenth century and renamed Macallan-Glenlivet and in 1980 the 'Glenlivet' suffix was removed.

From the 1950s onwards, Macallan has been greatly extended; in 1965 it doubled its stills to twelve, then to eighteen in 1974 and in 1975, it further increased them to number twenty-one. This was down to great demand, for Macallan had become very sought after. Old vintages are highly prized and very valuable.

Roderick Kemp acquired the distillery in 1892 and set up a family trust. In 1968, Macallan-Glenlivet was traded on the London Stock Exchange. The name is a conjunction of ‘Magh’, Gaelic for a fertile piece of land, and ‘Ellan’, or ‘Of St Fillan’. St Fillan was an Irish Monk who travelled through Scotland during the 700s, promoting Christianity.

In 1986, the Japanese company Suntory bought out a quarter of the stocks and a decade later, Highland Distillers bought out the remaining stocks, ending the Kemp family interests. The Macallan has largely used Sherry casks for the maturation of their whisky. A very characteristic Speysider, Macallan recently brought out a range of Fine Oak casks which were Bourbon-matured and an eighteen year-old from this range, took first place in Whisky Magazine’s “Best Malts of the World”.

The Macallan Whisky Distillery

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About The Macallan Whisky Distillery

Distillery Number

01340 871471

Distillery Founded


Distillery Capacity

8 000 000 litres

Distillery Status


Distillery Address

Craigellachie, Moray

Distillery Owner

Edrington Group

Distillery Website


The distillery is licensed to Alexander Reid under the name Elchies Distillery.


Alexander Reid passes away and James Shearer Priest and James Davidson take over.


James Stuart takes over the licence. He founds Glen Spey distillery a decade later.


Stuart sells the distillery to Roderick Kemp from Elgin who has previously worked at and been part-owner of Talisker. Kemp expands the distillery and names it Macallan-Glenlivet.


James Stuart buys the distillery.


Roderick Kemp passes away and the Roderick Kemp Trust is established to secure the family’s future ownership.


The number of stills is increased from six to twelve.


The trust is reformed as a private limited company.


The company is introduced on the London Stock Exchange.


The number of stills is increased to 18.


Another three stills are added, now making the total 21.


Allan Schiach, descendant of Roderick Kemp, becomes the new chairman of the board after Peter Schiach.


The name changes to Macallan and a large launch campaign takes place in the UK.


The first official 18 year old single malt is launched.


Japanese Suntory buys 25% of Macallan-Glenlivet plc stocks.


Highland Distilleries buys the remaining stocks and terminate the Kemp family’s influence on Macallan. 11,000 bottles of 1874 Replica are launched.


Edrington and William Grant & Sons buys Highland Distilleries (where Edrington, Suntory and Remy-Cointreau already are shareholders) for £601 million. They form the 1887 Company which owns Highland Distilleries with 70% held by Edrington and 30% by William Grant & Sons (excepting the 25% share held by Suntory).


The first single cask from Macallan (1981) is named Exceptional 1.


A new visitor centre is opened and 1861 Replica (17,400 bottles) are introduced.


Macallan Elegancia replaces Macallan 12 years in the duty-free assortment. 1841 Replica, Exceptional II and Exceptional III, from 1980, are also launched during the year.


1876 Replica (19,800 bottles) and Exceptional IV, single cask from 1990 (864 bottles) are launched.


Exceptional V, single cask from 1989 (858 bottles) is launched as well as Exceptional VI, single cask from 1990 (816 bottles). The Fine Oak series is launched and Macallan 18 years old takes first place in Whisky Magazine’s ‘Best Malts of the World’.


New expressions are Macallan Woodland Estate, Winter Edition and the 50 year old.


Fine Oak 17 years old and Vintage 1975 are launched.


1851 Inspiration and Whisky Maker´s Selection are released as a part of the Travel Retail range. 12 year old Gran Reserva is launched in Taiwan and Japan.


Estate Oak and 55 year old Lalique are released.

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

Balcones Whisky Distillery
Glenmorangie Whisky Distillery
Origin Gin
American White Oak Toasted Barrels
FEW Spirits
Master of Malt Single Cask Whisky
This sixteen year old Macallan was bottled for Duncan Taylor's Dimensions range at 54.8% abv without chill-filtration. Macallan remains one of the best selling single malts, however independent...  More info
Single cask Macallan single malt, matured in a refill hoggie for 16 years (from October 1997 to March 2014) and bottled by Douglas Laing. 360 Old Particular bottles of excellent whisky were produced...  More info
Single cask Macallan single malt Scotch whisky, matured in a refill hogshead for 16 years. It was distilled in the autumnal breeze of October 1997 and bottled in the balmy sun of August 2014 with an...  More info
A brilliant Macallan distilled in 1990 and aged in bourbon barrels before a finish in Premier Cru Chateau Haut Brion red wine casks. The result is a fabulous cask strength release of 1,450 bottles...  More info
This Macallan was distilled in 1991 and ged for 17 years. It was bottled at Bruichladdich by Murray McDavid after being given a finish in Tempranillo wine casks - a full-bodied Spanish wine. A release...  More info
This was distilled at Macallan in 1992 and it was aged in sherry casks for 17 years before bottling at the Bruichladdich distillery in 2009. A release of 1,000 bottles.  More info
Distilled in 1993 and aged in a single cask for 17 years, this Macallan was bottled by Adelphi at natural cask strength.  More info
Bottled in early 2014, this 17 year old Macallan enjoyed a secondary maturation in a teeny tiny octave cask! These have a much greater surface area to volume ratio - nice work Duncan Taylor!  More info
This Macallan was bottled by Murray McDavid (of Bruichladdich fame) for their Alchemist range.  More info
User Rating:  (1 Review)
An 18 year old from the legendary Speyside distillery, Macallan. This was bottled for Alchemist with no chill filtration or added colouring.  More info
User Rating:  (1 Review)
An incredibly rare cult-classic! This special limited edition "Dambusters" bottling of Macallan was created in honour of the legendary 617 Squadrons. The whisky itself is a single cask, distilled on...  More info
A superb cult whisky from Squadron Malts, featuring a cartoon of Saddam Hussein, and commemorating the Buccaneers in the Gulf. The whisky itself is an 18 year old, single cask Macallan, and there are...  More info
A special release of 18 year old single malt from The Macallan, distilled in 1979 and bottled in 1997. While Macallan is well known for their Sherry cask-matured whiskies, "Sherried" does not even do...  More info
User Rating:  (1 Review)
A single cask from the illustrious Macallan distillery in Speyside. This was distilled in August of 1990 and matured for 18 years in a refill hogshead before Douglas Laing bottled it in February 2009...  More info
A cask strength, single cask 18 year old Macallan! This was distilled in April of 1991 and matured in a single cask (cask number 9714) for 18 years before bottling by Duncan Taylor in January 2010...  More info
An 18 year old Macallan, distilled in June of 1993, and aged in a bourbon barrel before bottling in November 2011. A rich, spicy whisky from the Old Malt Cask range.  More info
Douglas Laing bottle whiskies without chill filtration or colouring for their Old Malt Cask series. This Old Malt Cask has been bottled from a cask of whisky from the famous Macallan distillery in...  More info
Macallan 1861 Replica
(70cl, 42.70%)
This rare bottling was the second release in Macallan's 'Replica' series, produced in 2001. An awesome piece for collectors, whisky historians and antiques enthusiasts.

Please be aware: The...  More info
A wonderfully unusual Macallan, distilled in 1990 and aged in bourbon before a finish in Amarone wine casks. Bottled in 2009 at the Bruichladdich distillery. A release of 440 bottles at natural cask...  More info
An old vintage from Macallan, bottled under Gordon and MacPhail's Speymalt range from the distillery. This was distilled in 1940 and aged in first fill sherry butts.  More info
This is a rare bottling of Macallan single malt Scotch whisky which was distilled in 1950 and bottled during the early 1980s. From the handwritten label, we can see that it was bottled for Atkinson...  More info
This is a Gordon & MacPhail bottling of Macallan single malt Scotch whisky, presented as part of their Speymalt range, which shows off a wide variety of Macallan vintages. It was distilled in 1966 and...  More info
Distilled in 1967 at the Macallan and aged in first fill sherry casks, bottled by Gordon and MacPhail as part of the Speymalt range. The bottlers describe this as "a big, sherried malt."  More info
The Speymalt range is a flagship from Scottish bottlers Gordon and MacPhail. It is a great selection of vintage Macallans, and for a 1968 Macallan for this money, you can't go far wrong.  More info
This 1970 Macallan single malt Scotch whisky, which was matured in a sherry butt, has been bottled by Gordon and MacPhail for their Speymalt series, a collection of whiskies which honour the fantastic...  More info
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