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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...

Carsebridge 30 Year Old 1979 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 48.8%
Carsebridge

Single grain bottled by Duncan Taylor. This was distilled at Carsebridge in March 1979 and matured for 30 years in cask number 33043 before bottling at natural cask strength in March 2010. A release…  More info

Carsebridge 30 Year Old 1979 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

Carsebridge 30 Year Old 1981 - The Clan Denny (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 59.1%
Carsebridge

A 30 year old single cask grain whisky from Carsebridge. This was distilled in 1981 and aged in refill hogshead 7780 before bottling at natural cask strength for the Clan Denny range.  More info

Carsebridge 30 Year Old 1981 - The Clan Denny (Douglas Laing)

Carsebridge 33 Year Old 1982 (cask 11339) - Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 44.9%
Carsebridge

A single cask bottling of 33 year old Carsebridge single grain Scotch whisky, aged in a single refill hogshead (which, evidently, imparted a wealth of colour as well as flavour to this whisky). It…  More info

Carsebridge 33 Year Old 1982 (cask 11339) - Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
$84.45

Carsebridge 33 Year Old 1982 (cask 74681) (The Grainman)

70cl, 42.6%
Carsebridge

It's The Grainman from The Maltman, or rather Meadowside Blending aka Donald and Andrew Hart. This single grain was distilled at the now-closed Carsebridge in December 1982 and spent over 33 years in…  More info

Carsebridge 33 Year Old 1982 (cask 74681) (The Grainman)
$90.91

Carsebridge 38 Year Old 1976 (cask 130950) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 55.8%
Carsebridge

Well aged grain whisky from the closed Carsebridge distillery, bottled by Signatory for La Maison du Whisky's Hogshead series. It spent over 38 years in a single cask between October 1976 and August…  More info

Carsebridge 38 Year Old 1976 (cask 130950) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)
$286.98

Carsebridge 42 Year Old 1973 (cask 11848) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 48.9%
Carsebridge

Ooh, single grain Scotch whisky from the long-closed Carsebridge distillery! Not only that, this is 42 year old single grain Carsebridge! Incredibly rare, exciting stuff right here... It was…  More info

Carsebridge 42 Year Old 1973 (cask 11848) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)

Carsebridge 42 Year Old 1973 (cask 12366) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 53.1%
Carsebridge

An independently bottled Carsebridge single grain Scotch whisky, aged in a refill hogshead cask for 42 years! Whisky from this distillery is very rare indeed, as it closed all the way back in the…  More info

Carsebridge 42 Year Old 1973 (cask 12366) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)
$248.49

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

70cl, 44.7%
Carsebridge

Carsebridge was mothballed in 1983 then stripped of its parts in the 1990s, so what does this mean for this whisky? Well, it means we have a whisky that will never be produced again and will slowly…  More info

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

Carsebridge 50 Year Old 1965 (cask 10993) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 40.1%
Carsebridge

A stunning 50 year old Carsebridge grain whisky, matured in a single refill hogshead and bottled by Douglas Laing for their XOP range.  More info

Carsebridge 50 Year Old 1965 (cask 10993) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

Carsebridge 50 Year Old 1965 (cask 11847) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 41.5%
Carsebridge

Distilled in October 1965, this grain was bottled by Hunter Laing in October 2015. The outturn of the single refill hogshead in which this whisky spent half a century maturing was just 267 bottles at…  More info

Carsebridge 50 Year Old 1965 (cask 11847) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)
$519.78

Carsebridge 52 Year Old 1964 - Single Cask (Master of Malt)

70cl, 40.5%
Carsebridge

An extraordinarily well aged 52 year old single grain Scotch whisky from a single refill barrel. Distilled in January 1964, we bottled it at a natural cask strength of 40.5% in May 2016 with an…  More info

Carsebridge 52 Year Old 1964 - Single Cask (Master of Malt)
$341.52

Coleburn 1972 (bottled 2013) (Lot No. RO/13/06) - Rare Old (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 46%
Coleburn

An independent bottling of single malt Scotch whisky from the seldom-seen Coleburn distillery, which was closed in 1985. Very collectible for whisky historians, this. It was distilled in 1972, long…  More info

Coleburn 1972 (bottled 2013) (Lot No. RO/13/06) - Rare Old (Gordon & MacPhail)

Coleburn 1981 (bottled 2015) (Lot. No. RO/15/08) - Rare Old (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 46%
Coleburn

The Coleburn distillery was sadly one of the many losses suffered by the whisky world during the 1980s - luckily, some independent bottlers continue to bottle the whisky which they distilled before…  More info

Coleburn 1981 (bottled 2015) (Lot. No. RO/15/08) - Rare Old (Gordon & MacPhail)
$441.15

Coleburn 1981 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 43%
Coleburn

A 27 year old bottling from Gordon and MacPhail's Connoisseur's Choice range, single malts from the Coleburn distillery are decidedly rare and this refill sherry matured expression is a wonderful…  More info

Coleburn 1981 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon & MacPhail)
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Coleburn 21 Year Old 1979 - Rare Malts

70cl, 59.4%
Coleburn

A cask strength edition, 1979 vintage, part of Diageo's Rare Malts range, this 21 year old proffers a rare chance to sample a single malt from the now closed Coleburn distillery.  More info

Coleburn 21 Year Old 1979 - Rare Malts

Coleburn 25 Year Old 1980 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 50%
Coleburn

The Speyside distillery of Coleburn closed in 1985 and it is becoming more and more difficult to locate a bottle, thankfully this twenty-five year old Coleburn has been bottled by Douglas Laing for…  More info

Coleburn 25 Year Old 1980 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

Coleburn 29 Year Old 1979 - Mackillop's Choice

70cl, 44.3%
Coleburn

This is a 29 year old Mackillop's Coleburn bottled in 2008. Sadly Coleburn is now a closed distillery, but this bottling provides the opportunity to try some!  More info

Coleburn 29 Year Old 1979 - Mackillop's Choice

Convalmore 1975 (bottled 2015) (Lot. No. RO/15/06) - Rare Old (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 46%
Convalmore

Independently bottled single single malt Scotch whisky from the Convalmore distillery, which shut its doors in 1985 for the last time. It was distilled 10 years before that, in 1975, and bottled in…  More info

Convalmore 1975 (bottled 2015) (Lot. No. RO/15/06) - Rare Old (Gordon & MacPhail)
$578.19

Convalmore 1975 (bottled 2015) (Lot. No. RO/16/01) - Rare Old (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 46%
Convalmore

A 1975 vintage Convalmore single malt Scotch whisky, bottled in 2015 by the folks at Gordon & MacPhail for their Rare Old range. Convalmore once resided in the Speyside region, though sadly shut its…  More info

Convalmore 1975 (bottled 2015) (Lot. No. RO/16/01) - Rare Old (Gordon & MacPhail)
$608.73

Convalmore 1981 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon and MacPhail)

70cl, 40%
Convalmore

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

Convalmore 1981 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon and MacPhail)

Convalmore 1984 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 43%
Convalmore

A 23 year old expression from Gordon and MacPhail, this was distilled at the now silent Convalmore distillery in 1984 and matured in refill sherry hogsheads before bottling in July of 2008.  More info

Convalmore 1984 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon & MacPhail)
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Convalmore 24 Year Old 1978 - Rare Malts

70cl, 59.4%
Convalmore

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

Convalmore 24 Year Old 1978 - Rare Malts
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Convalmore 28 Year Old

70cl, 57.9%
Convalmore

A 28 year old official expression from the now silent Convalmore distillery, this bottling has been released at cask strength and is part of a rare limited edition of just 3,900 bottles.  More info

Convalmore 28 Year Old

Convalmore 32 Year Old 1975 - Rare Old (Gordon and MacPhail)

70cl, 43%
Convalmore

A 32 year old from the Convalmore distillery, distilled in 1975 and matured in a bourbon cask. This single malt is part of a limited release of just 202 bottles and has been bottled at 48%.  More info

Convalmore 32 Year Old 1975 - Rare Old (Gordon and MacPhail)

Convalmore 36 Year Old 1977 (2013 Special Release)

70cl, 58%
Convalmore

A fantastic 36 year old from the closed distillery of Convalmore, silent since 1985. Matured in European Oak refill casks, only 2,680 sought after, natural cask strength bottles are available as part…  More info

Convalmore 36 Year Old 1977 (2013 Special Release)
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$694.81

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