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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...

Glen Mhor 34 Years Old 1975 (cask 6034) - Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 43.70%
Glen Mhor

34 year old single malt Scotch whisky, distilled by Glen Mhor in 1975, around 8 years before the distillery was closed (and eventually demolished). This well-matured single malt Scotch whisky comes…  More info

Glen Mhor 34 Years Old 1975 (cask 6034) - Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)
$1284.80

Inverleven 34 Year Old 1978 (cask 5781) - Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 41.20%
Inverleven

34 year old single malt Scotch whisky from the Inverleven distillery, which has been closed since 1991. Luckily, we've got independent bottlers like Duncan Taylor who are more than happy to present…  More info

Inverleven 34 Year Old 1978 (cask 5781) - Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)
$1005.78

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1978 - Old & Rare Platinum (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 56.50%
Port Ellen

A Hunter Laing bottling of single malt Scotch whisky from one of the most renowned closed distilleries in Scotland - Port Ellen. Distilled at the Islay distillery in September 1978 and aged in a…  More info

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1978 - Old & Rare Platinum (Hunter Laing)
$1331.59

Glenlochy 35 Year Old 1980 (cask 3231) - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)

70cl, 48%
Glenlochy

Rare single malt Scotch whisky from the closed Glenlochy distillery, aged in a single hogshead cask for 35 years. It was distilled in November 1980, three years before the distillery was shut, and…  More info

Glenlochy 35 Year Old 1980 (cask 3231) - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)
$1044.97

Glenlochy 35 Year Old 1980 (cask 3232) - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)

70cl, 51.10%
Glenlochy

A 35 year old Glenlochy single malt, aged in a single hogshead cask (#3232) from November 1980 to December 2015. Not much of this around these days, as the distillery was closed back in 1983. 218…  More info

Glenlochy 35 Year Old 1980 (cask 3232) - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)
$1044.97

Port Ellen 36 Year Old 1979 (cask 10914) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 56.60%
Port Ellen

A 36 year old Port Ellen! Need we say more? Well, it was distilled in May 1979 and bottled by Douglas Laing for their Extra Old Particular range in September 2015. 227 bottles were filled from a…  More info

Port Ellen 36 Year Old 1979 (cask 10914) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
$1232.69

Brora 37 Year Old 1977 (Special Release 2015)

70cl, 50.40%
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
$1430.81

Banff 38 Year Old 1975 (cask 1028) - Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 49.40%
Banff

Duncan Taylor only use rare, well aged whisky for their Tantalus range of releases, and this Banff single malt Scotch whisky fits the bill very well indeed. The Banff distillery closed in 1983, but…  More info

Banff 38 Year Old 1975 (cask 1028) - Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)
$1122.64

Kinclaith 40 Year Old 1969 (cask 301445) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 47.30%
Kinclaith

Single malt whisky from Kinclaith is extremely rare and highly sought after. Built to provide malt whisky for the Long John blend, the distillery was only in operation for 18 years, between 1957 an…  More info

Kinclaith 40 Year Old 1969 (cask 301445) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)
2
$2146.22

Ladyburn 40 Year Old 1974 (cask 74) - Private Cask Collection (William Grant & Sons)

70cl, 48.60%
Ladyburn

It's incredibly rare to see a bottling of Ladyburn single malt Scotch whisky, seeing as the distillery was closed in 1975 after only being founded on the Girvan grain distillery site 9 years prior.…  More info

Ladyburn 40 Year Old 1974 (cask 74) - Private Cask Collection (William Grant & Sons)
1
$2861.85

The Cally 40 Year Old 1974 (Special Release 2015)

70cl, 53.30%
Caledonian

A single grain whisky in the Special Releases! The first since 2011's Port Dundas and only the second ever as far as we can remember. Caledonian grain distillery in Edinburgh closed in 1988 and is…  More info

The Cally 40 Year Old 1974 (Special Release 2015)
$827.13

Rare Ayrshire 40 Year Old 1975 (cask 3421) - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)

70cl, 47.10%
Ladyburn

Ooh, an indie Rare Ayrshire! These are indeed very rare, as the distillery from which the whisky came from has long been closed. This is a 40 year old rare Ayrshire single malt, put into its bourbon…  More info

Rare Ayrshire 40 Year Old 1975 (cask 3421) - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)
$938.85

Caperdonich 41 Year Old 1972 (cask 7458) - Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 53.70%
Caperdonich

A Duncan Taylor bottling of single malt Scotch whisky from the closed Caperdonich distillery, distilled in 1972 and matured in cask 7458 for a massive 41 years! Though Caperdocih shut its doors back…  More info

Caperdonich 41 Year Old 1972 (cask 7458) - Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)
$1180.57

Ladyburn 41 Year Old (William Grant & Sons)

70cl, 40%
Ladyburn

Boy oh boy! A very special bottling here - a 41 year old single malt from a closed distillery that shut its doors back in 1975, having only been founded in 1966! Yes, this is William Grant & Sons…  More info

Ladyburn 41 Year Old (William Grant & Sons)
$1762.36

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

70cl, 53.10%
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)
$258.34

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

70cl, 41.50%
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)
$540.38

Glen Mhor 50 Year Old 1965 (cask 3934) - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)

70cl, 47.10%
Glen Mhor

A very exciting independent bottling of 50 year old Glen Mhor single malt Scotch whisky - a rare whisky from a distillery which closed back in the early 1980s. This particularly bottling was…  More info

Glen Mhor 50 Year Old 1965 (cask 3934) - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)
$2408.34

Carsebridge 52 Year Old (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

50cl, 40.50%
Carsebridge

A 52 year old single grain Scotch whisky from a distillery that closed back in 1983! Good it is, too. The label, meanwhile, features Tristan Stephenson and Thomas Aske (the chaps behind the Worship…  More info

Carsebridge 52 Year Old (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)
$255.80

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

70cl, 40.50%
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)
$355.05

Imperial 16 Year Old 1995 - Dimensions (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 53%
Imperial

A splendid Imperial 16 year old, bottled by Duncan Taylor. This is non-chillfiltered and cask stregth, a nicely structured sweetish dram.  More info

Imperial 16 Year Old 1995 - Dimensions (Duncan Taylor)

Glen Mhor Pure Malt Whisky

75cl, 40%
Glen Mhor

A "pure malt" from Glen Mhor, this is an incredibly rare whisky bottled in the days of "proof" and measuring volume in fluid ounces! A great whisky from a now lost distillery…  More info

Glen Mhor Pure Malt Whisky
$308.74

Inverleven 1990 (Gordon and MacPhail)

70cl, 40%
Inverleven

A 1990 vintage Inverleven, bottled by stalwart independent bottlers, Gordon and MacPhail.  More info

Inverleven 1990 (Gordon and MacPhail)
$61.74

Imperial 19 Year Old 1990 (cask 11966) - Mackillop's Choice

70cl, 43%
Imperial

A bottling of a 19-year-old Imperial single cask malt by Lorne Mackillop, who is descended from one of the survivors of the massacre of the Mackillop Clan at the hands of the english redcoats in 1745.  More info

Imperial 19 Year Old 1990 (cask 11966) - Mackillop's Choice

Glen Albyn 1976 (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 43%
Glen Albyn

This Glen Albyn was distilled in 1976 and was bottled by independent bottler Gordon & MacPhail. Glen Albyn was closed in 1983 and demolished three years later, needless to say this is a rare bottling.  More info

Glen Albyn 1976 (Gordon & MacPhail)
$401.76

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

50cl, 45.60%
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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