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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...

Port Ellen 26 Year Old 1983 - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Port Ellen

A 26 year old from perhaps Islay's most legendary distillery, Port Ellen. This was distilled in Spring 1983 (just a few months before the distillery was shut down permenantly), and it was aged in…  More info

Port Ellen 26 Year Old 1983 - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

Littlemill 27 Year Old 1985 - The Coopers Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)

70cl, 46%
Littlemill

This was distilled at Littlemill in 1985 before a 27 year maturation in a single cask (number 110). It was bottled in 2012 for Vintage Malt Whisky Company's Coopers Choice range.  More info

Littlemill 27 Year Old 1985 - The Coopers Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)
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Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1979 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 57.10%
Port Ellen

A very mature, 27 year old Port Ellen. Perhaps the most legendary distilleries of them all, though now defunct. Just 396 bottles of this were released, a very rare Douglas Laing bottling. Serge from…  More info

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1979 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 (cask 02 - bottled 2010) - Single Malts of Scotland (Speciality Drinks)

70cl, 46%
Port Ellen

This is a single cask bottling of Port Ellen single malt Scotch whisky, matured in a refill butt from February 1983 until September 2010. Part of the Single Malts of Scotland range of independent…  More info

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 (cask 02 - bottled 2010) - Single Malts of Scotland (Speciality Drinks)
$508.13

Glenlochy 27 Year Old 1980 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 53.90%
Glenlochy

A 27 year old Glenlochy, bottled at cask strength by Signatory on the 25th June 2008 following maturation in hogshead number 2823. Part of a limited release of just 231 bottles - each being…  More info

Glenlochy 27 Year Old 1980 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Inverleven 27 Year Old 1977 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 51%
Inverleven

A Signatory bottling from the now defunct Lowland distillery, Inverleven. This was distilled on the 14th September 1977, matured for an impressive 27 years before bottling on the 6th April 2005. A…  More info

Inverleven 27 Year Old 1977 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 55.70%
Port Ellen

This stunning Port Ellen was distilled on the 2nd of February 1983 (just a few months before the distillery closed for good) and was aged in wine treated butt number 231 for 27 years before bottling…  More info

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Glen Mhor 27 Year Old 1982 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 55%
Glen Mhor

A single cask from the now closed Glen Mhor distillery. This was distilled on the 1st September 1982, matured for 27 years in hogshead number 1327 before bottling on the 6th April 2010 at cask…  More info

Glen Mhor 27 Year Old 1982 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)
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Imperial 27 Year Old 1982 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 58.30%
Imperial

This was distilled at Imperial on the 24th June 1982, aged in refill sherry butt number 3973 for 27 years and bottled by Signatory on the 8th April 2010. A release of 649 numbered bottles.  More info

Imperial 27 Year Old 1982 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)
$112.72

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1982 - Mission (Murray McDavid)

70cl, 48.60%
Port Ellen

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…  More info

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1982 - Mission (Murray McDavid)
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Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 (cask 6101) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Port Ellen

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

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 (cask 6101) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)
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Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1978 - 6th Release (2006 Special Release)

70cl, 54.20%
Port Ellen

A rather rare bottling of 27 year old, 1978 vintage single malt Scotch whisky from the legendary (and sadly closed) Port Ellen distillery on Islay. This was released in 2006 as part of Diageo's 6th…  More info

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1978 - 6th Release (2006 Special Release)
$1367.39

Glen Mhor 27 Year Old 1982 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 50%
Glen Mhor

A 27 year old from the Old Malt Cask range. This was distilled at the Glen Mhor distillery (which is now long gone) in August 1982 and it was aged in a refill hogshead before bottling in August 2009.  More info

Glen Mhor 27 Year Old 1982 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 50%
Port Ellen

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

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 Cask 517 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 59%
Port Ellen

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

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 Cask 517 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 54.70%
Port Ellen

This stunning Port Ellen was distilled on the 2nd of February 1983 (just a few months before the distillery closed for good) and was aged in wine treated butt number 231 for 27 years before bottling…  More info

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 (cask 6000) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Port Ellen

A 27 year old Port Ellen from a single cask! This was distilled in the Winter 1983 and aged in cask 6000 (a refill hogshead) before bottling in Spring 2010 for the Provenance range.  More info

Port Ellen 27 Year Old 1983 (cask 6000) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

Linlithgow 28 Year Old 1982 (cask 2206) - Mackillop's Choice

70cl, 57.30%
St. Magdalene

This was distilled at the St Magdalene distillery on the 5th October 1982, and it was aged for 28 years in cask 2206 before bottling for Mackillop's Choice in April of 2011. Each bottle is…  More info

Linlithgow 28 Year Old 1982 (cask 2206) - Mackillop's Choice

Convalmore 28 Year Old

70cl, 57.90%
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

Brechin 28 Year Old

70cl, 53%
North Port

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

Brechin 28 Year Old

Glen Mhor 28 Year Old 1976 - Rare Malts

70cl, 51.90%
Glen Mhor

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

Glen Mhor 28 Year Old 1976 - Rare Malts

Glen Albyn 28 Year Old 1981 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 53.10%
Glen Albyn

A rare single cask bottling from a closed distillery! This was distilled on the 16th January 1981, matured in hogshead number 51 and bottled by Signatory on the 27th October 2009. Part of a release…  More info

Glen Albyn 28 Year Old 1981 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

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

70cl, 57.40%
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)
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Garnheath 28 Year Old 1986 (cask 22156) - The Cooper's Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)

70cl, 48.50%
Garnheath

A rare example of single grain Scotch whisky from the Garnheath distillery, who operated within the Moffat complex from 1965 to 1986. This Cooper's Choice single cask bottling was distilled during…  More info

Garnheath 28 Year Old 1986 (cask 22156) - The Cooper's Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)
$208.79

Banff 38 Year Old 1971 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 53.40%
Banff

A super rare, super old Banff bottled for Douglas Laing's Old and Rare Platinum selection. This was distilled in 1971, and bottled in August 2009 at cask strength.  More info

Banff 38 Year Old 1971 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

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