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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...

Brora 1982 - Jewels of Scotland (Lombard)

70cl, 50%
Brora

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

Brora 1982 - Jewels of Scotland (Lombard)

Brora 20 Year Old 1982 - Rare Malts

70cl, 58.1%
Brora

An incredibly rare, cask strength Brora (a closed Highland distillery) from Diageo's legendary Rare Malts range. This was distilled in 1982 and aged for 20 years. Stunning stuff!  More info

Brora 20 Year Old 1982 - Rare Malts
$325.08

Brora 21 Year Old 1977 - Rare Malts

70cl, 56.9%
Brora

While Brora remains closed (wishing on a shooting star for it to reopen hasn't worked... Yet), you can still find bottles of their single malt floating around in the world, like this Rare Malts…  More info

Brora 21 Year Old 1977 - Rare Malts
$776.37

Brora 24 Year Old 1977 - Rare Malts

70cl, 56.1%
Brora

A 24 year old Rare Malt, very rare as Brora closed in March of 1983. This was distilled in 1977 and released in 2001.  More info

Brora 24 Year Old 1977 - Rare Malts
1

Brora 25 Year Old

70cl, 56.3%
Brora

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

Brora 25 Year Old
1

Brora 28 Year Old 1981 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 57.4%
Brora

A very rare Brora. This single cask was bottled by Douglas Laing, and there are just 93 bottles! Distilled in June 1981 and matured for 28 years before bottling in November 2009.  More info

Brora 28 Year Old 1981 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)
1

Brora 30 Year Old (2002 Release)

70cl, 52.4%
Brora

This has recently become a hard to come by bottling from the Brora distillery. A 30 year old released in 2002 as part of a group of older whiskies from the now closed Northern Highland-based…  More info

Brora 30 Year Old (2002 Release)

Brora 30 Year Old (2003 Release)

70cl, 55.7%
Brora

A rare, 30 year old cask strength dram from Brora. The Brora distillery has since been closed and is now used as a warehouse and visitor centre by adjacent distillery, Clynelish. This bottle was…  More info

Brora 30 Year Old (2003 Release)
$1479.79

Brora 30 Year Old (2005 Release)

70cl, 56.3%
Brora

Part of a series of seven releases from the Brora distillery, this is the fourth release of Brora 30 year old and was launched in 2005. There are some cereal notes, with oily spice and a nice breath…  More info

Brora 30 Year Old (2005 Release)

Brora 30 Year Old (2006 Release)

70cl, 55.7%
Brora

Just 2,130 bottles of this fifth-edition of Brora 30 were released. Aged in refill American and European oak casks, this single malt was released in 2006.  More info

Brora 30 Year Old (2006 Release)

Brora 30 Year Old (2007 Release)

70cl, 55.7%
Brora

Just 2,958 individually numbered bottles were released. This Brora 30 year old was matured in refill American and European oak casks and was released in September of 2007.  More info

Brora 30 Year Old (2007 Release)

Brora 30 Year Old (2009 Release)

70cl, 53.2%
Brora

The most recent release of Brora rare, cask strength 30 year old. John Hansell even rated this a whopping 95 points! This is a muscular, powerful dram.  More info

Brora 30 Year Old (2009 Release)
$280.03

Brora 30 Year Old (2010 Release)

70cl, 54.3%
Brora

The 2010 release of Diageo's superb Brora 30yo. A marked improvement on last year's in our humble opinion.  More info

Brora 30 Year Old (2010 Release)

Brora 30 Year Old - 3rd Release (Special Release 2004)

70cl, 56.6%
Brora

Ooh, looky - a Brora Special Release from 2004! 30 year old single malt from this closed and highly-sought after distillery. 3,000 delicious bottles were released.  More info

Brora 30 Year Old - 3rd Release (Special Release 2004)
$1057.61

Brora 30 Year Old 1976 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 55.1%
Brora

A very special Brora, this was distilled in October 1976 and aged for 30 years before bottling as a release of 104 bottles in September 2007 for the ultra exclusive Old and Rare Platinum range from…  More info

Brora 30 Year Old 1976 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

Brora 32 Year Old (2011 Release)

70cl, 54.7%
Brora

An annual crowd-pleaser, Brora tends to be a muscular, sooty brute of a whisky, and we love it. 2011's Special Releases sees the launch of a 32 year old Brora, aged in refill American and European…  More info

Brora 32 Year Old (2011 Release)
1

Brora 35 Year Old (2012 Special Release)

70cl, 48.1%
Brora

The oldest release to date of this rare single malt - this 35 year old Brora was bottled at 48.1%abv from re-fill ex-Bourbon casks.Only 1,586 bottles were produced of this excellent single malt in…  More info

Brora 35 Year Old (2012 Special Release)
$1186.80

Brora 35 Year Old 1977 (2013 Special Release)

70cl, 49.9%
Brora

STRICTLY 1 PER CUSTOMER Distilled in 1977, this extraordinary 35 year old Brora from Diageo's Special Releases was matured in American and European oak casks. It's the twelfth annual release of…  More info

Brora 35 Year Old 1977 (2013 Special Release)
1
$1055.48

Brora 35 Year Old 1978 (2014 Special Release)

70cl, 48.6%
Brora

Strictly 1 Per Customer 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…  More info

Brora 35 Year Old 1978 (2014 Special Release)
$1272.94

Brora 37 Year Old 1977 (Special Release 2015)

70cl, 50.4%
Brora

The fourteenth annual release of Brora single malt in Diageo's Special Releases is also the oldest in the series - a 37 year old 1977 vintage matured in refill American oak hogsheads. A release of…  More info

Brora 37 Year Old 1977 (Special Release 2015)
2
$1376.25

Caledonian 39 Year Old 1976 (cask 900002) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 51.9%
Caledonian

Single grain whisky from a closed distillery, matured for almost four decades in a single hogshead. This was distilled in April 1976 and set aside for 39 years until August 2015, when it was bottled…  More info

Caledonian 39 Year Old 1976 (cask 900002) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)
$285.71

Caledonian 41 Year Old 1974 (cask 11836) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 50.2%
Caledonian

Very, very rare single grain Scotch whisky here from the Caledonian distillery, presented as part of The Sovereign range by Hunter Laing. The Caledonian distillery stood in Edinburgh since 1855,…  More info

Caledonian 41 Year Old 1974 (cask 11836) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)

Caledonian 45 Year Old 1965 - The Clan Denny (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 47.3%
Caledonian

A beautiful 45 year old single grain whisky, distilled in 1965 and aged in bourbon barrel 7501 before bottling for Duncan Taylor's Clan Denny range.  More info

Caledonian 45 Year Old 1965 - The Clan Denny (Douglas Laing)

Caledonian 45 Year Old 1965 -The Clan Denny (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46.1%
Caledonian

A natural cask strength Caledonian grain whisky, this was matured in cask 6294 (a bourbon barrel) for 45 years before bottling under the Clan Denny label.  More info

Caledonian 45 Year Old 1965 -The Clan Denny (Douglas Laing)

Caperdonich - Batch 1 (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

50cl, 45.6%
Caperdonich

This whisky is from the Speyside distillery of Caperdonich, a distillery with a turbulent history. Caperdonich opened in 1897 under the imaginative name Glen Grant Number Two, after its sister…  More info

Caperdonich - Batch 1 (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

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