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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 30 Year Old 1983 (cask 671) Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 52%
Port Ellen

Saying that Port Ellen whisky is sought-after is like saying jam is pretty good on toast - a massive understatement! The distillery on Islay closed in 1983, to the disappointment of many who loved…  More info

Port Ellen 30 Year Old 1983 (cask 671) Tantalus (Duncan Taylor)
2
$1934.88

Port Ellen 33 Year Old 1982 - Old & Rare Platinum (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 58.3%
Port Ellen

Sherry matured single cask Port Ellen! Hunter Laing have bottled this extremely exciting 33 year old malt from this famous closed Islay distillery. Bottled from the Sherry butt in October 2015, just…  More info

Port Ellen 33 Year Old 1982 - Old & Rare Platinum (Hunter Laing)
$1981.02

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

70cl, 47.3%
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
$2040.91

Port Ellen 25 Year Old 1978 - 4th Release (2004 Special Release)

70cl, 56.2%
Port Ellen

A rare Diageo Special Release of single malt from the legendary closed distillery of Port Ellen, bottled in 2004! We were lucky enough to taste this release at Fèis Ìle 2011. This bottle was part…  More info

Port Ellen 25 Year Old 1978 - 4th Release (2004 Special Release)
$2092.19

Port Ellen 32 Year Old 1983 - 15th Release (2015 Special Release)

70cl, 53.9%
Port Ellen

32 year old single malt Scotch whisky from an Islay distillery that was mothballed in 1983 and never reopened. The whisky comes from the final year of production. Matured in refill European oak butts…  More info

Port Ellen 32 Year Old 1983 - 15th Release (2015 Special Release)
$2516.92

Port Ellen 37 Year Old 1978 - 16th Release (Special Release 2016)

70cl, 55.2%
Port Ellen

Like most of this year's Special Releases, this is a natural cask strength single malt whisky matured in refill American oak hogshead and refill European oak butts. Unlike most of this year's Special…  More info

Port Ellen 37 Year Old 1978 - 16th Release (Special Release 2016)
1
$2621.79

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

70cl, 48.6%
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
$2721.42

Caperdonich 38 Year Old 1970 (Adelphi) 10cl

10cl, 47.1%
Caperdonich

A very well aged bottle of Caperdonich, or sample should we say! An excellent chance to try 38 year old single cask Caperdonich, this was distilled in 1970 and matured in cask number 4378 before…  More info

Caperdonich 38 Year Old 1970 (Adelphi) 10cl

Caperdonich 12 Year Old 1997 - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Caperdonich

This was distilled at the Caperdonich distillery in Speyside in the Spring of 1997 and matured for 12 years in a single refill hogshead (number 5569) before bottling by Douglas Laing for the…  More info

Caperdonich 12 Year Old 1997 - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

Caperdonich 17 Year Old 1995 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

70cl, 46%
Caperdonich

This is an un-chill-filtered bottling of seventeen year old caperdonich by independent bottler Signatory.  More info

Caperdonich 17 Year Old 1995 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

Imperial 15 Year Old 1995 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

70cl, 46%
Imperial

Distilled at the Imperial distillery in 1995, this was aged for 15 years in two hogsheads. Bottled in 2011, a release of 737 bottles.  More info

Imperial 15 Year Old 1995 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

Caperdonich 16 Year Old 1994 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

70cl, 46%
Caperdonich

Bottled un-chill filtered, and with no caramel colouring, this is pure, unadulterated whisky. Distilled at Caperdonich on the 9th July 1994, it was aged in two hogsheads, and was bottled by Signatory…  More info

Caperdonich 16 Year Old 1994 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

Imperial 11 Year Old 1998 - NC2 (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 46%
Imperial

An 11 year old from the now mothballed Imperial distillery. This was distilled in 1998 and bottled by Duncan Taylor in 2010 for their NC2 range (non chillfiltered and non caramel coloured).  More info

Imperial 11 Year Old 1998 - NC2 (Duncan Taylor)

Imperial 17 Year Old 1995 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

70cl, 46%
Imperial

This is an Un-Chillfiltered Imperial from Signatory, distilled in October 1995 and aged for 17 years in a pair of hogsheads. It was bottled in 2012...  More info

Imperial 17 Year Old 1995 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

Glen Mhor 1979 - Cask Strength (Gordon and MacPhail)

35cl, 66.7%
Glen Mhor

Distilled at the now silent Glen Mhor in 1979 and bottled in July 1995 at a thunderous cask strength.  More info

Glen Mhor 1979 - Cask Strength (Gordon and MacPhail)

Dallas Dhu 1982 35cl (Gordon and MacPhail)

35cl, 40%
Dallas Dhu

A half bottle of 23 year old, refill bourbon matured Dallas Dhu, distilled in 1982 and bottled by Gordon and MacPhail.  More info

Dallas Dhu 1982 35cl (Gordon and MacPhail)

Imperial 13 Year Old 1997 - NC2 (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 46%
Imperial

Distilled in 1997, this 13 year old Imperial was bottled by Duncan Taylor in 2010 for their range of non chillfiltered, non caramel coloured single malts (NC2).  More info

Imperial 13 Year Old 1997 - NC2 (Duncan Taylor)

Imperial 16 Year Old 1995 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

70cl, 46%
Imperial

From Signatory's Un-Chillfiltered range, this Imperial was distilled on the 9th October 1995 and it was aged for 16 years in hogsheads 50332 and 50333 before bottling on the 24th November 2011. A…  More info

Imperial 16 Year Old 1995 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

Imperial 15 Year Old 1995 Casks 50320 & 50321 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

70cl, 46%
Imperial

This 15 year old Imperial was distilled on the 9th October 1995 and it was aged in two hogsheads (numbers 50320 and 50321) before bottling on the 12th September 2011. A release of 703 numbered…  More info

Imperial 15 Year Old 1995 Casks 50320 & 50321 - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

Port Ellen 25 Year Old 1982 Advance Sample - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing) 20cl

20cl, 50%
Port Ellen

A 20cl Advance Sample from Douglas Laing. This was distilled at the Port Ellen distillery in November 1982 and aged for 25 years in sherry butt number 4673. It was bottled in September 2008.  More info

Port Ellen 25 Year Old 1982 Advance Sample - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing) 20cl

Caperdonich 1994 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon and MacPhail)

70cl, 46%
Caperdonich

Speyside whisky bottled by Gordon and Macphail. One of the rarer whiskies in our collection.  More info

Caperdonich 1994 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon and MacPhail)

Caperdonich 1998 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon & Macphail)

70cl, 46%
Caperdonich

This is a popular distillery with aficionados. At one point it was known as Glen Grant No.2 after its sister distillery. Legend has it that the two were connected by a pipe to transfer whisky between…  More info

Caperdonich 1998 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon & Macphail)

Imperial 18 Years Old 1995 (casks 50280+50281) - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

70cl, 46%
Imperial

Un-chillfiltered single malt Scotch whisky from the sadly closed distillery Imperial. The two casks used for this release were filled in September 1995 and bottled by Signatory in October 2013,…  More info

Imperial 18 Years Old 1995 (casks 50280+50281) - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

Imperial 18 Year Old 1995 (cask 50288 + 50289) - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

70cl, 46%
Imperial

An un-chillfiltered Imperial single malt, bottled by the lovely folks at Signatory. Taken from two hogshead casks filled in September 1995 and emptied in April 2014. 742 bottles of whisky from this…  More info

Imperial 18 Year Old 1995 (cask 50288 + 50289) - Un-Chillfiltered (Signatory)

Imperial 1991 - Gordon and MacPhail

70cl, 43%
Imperial

Distilled in 1991 at Speyside's Imperial distillery. Bottled in 2006 by Gordon and MacPhail.  More info

Imperial 1991 - Gordon and MacPhail

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