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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...

Dallas Dhu 1975 (Gordon and MacPhail)

70cl, 40%
Dallas Dhu

Matured in refill bourbon casks, this 1975 vintage from Gordon and MacPhail's Connoisseur's Choice range is a superb 32 year old expression from the Dallas Dhu distillery.  More info

Dallas Dhu 1975 (Gordon and MacPhail)
1

Glenugie 31 Year Old 1977 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 58.10%
Glenugie

A 31 year old Glenugie, distilled on the 20th December 1977 and bottled by Signatory on the 14th September 2009. Part of a release of 577 bottles.  More info

Glenugie 31 Year Old 1977 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Glenugie 33 Year Old 1977 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 57.20%
Glenugie

This was distilled at the Glenugie distillery on the 20th December 1977, and aged in a hogshead and a sherry butt. It was then bottled on the 14th January 2011 by Signatory. A release of 573 bottles.  More info

Glenugie 33 Year Old 1977 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Rare Ayrshire 36 Year Old 1975 (cask 563) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 45.30%
Ladyburn

This single cask whisky was distilled at Rare Ayrshire on the 21st February 1975, and it was aged for 36 years in a single bourbon barrel before bottling by Signatory at cask strength on the 20th…  More info

Rare Ayrshire 36 Year Old 1975 (cask 563) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Glenugie 32 Year Old 1977 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 58.60%
Glenugie

Single cask Glenugie. This was distilled on the 15th October 1977 and aged for 32 years. It was given a 90 month finish in top quality Oloroso sherry butts and bottled by Signatory on the 19th March…  More info

Glenugie 32 Year Old 1977 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Linlithgow 26 Year Old 1982 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 61.20%
St. Magdalene

Linlithgow is distilled at the St Magdalene distillery in the Lowlands. This was distilled on the 5th October 1982 and matured for 26 years in wine treated butt number 2200 before bottling on the 3rd…  More info

Linlithgow 26 Year Old 1982 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Port Ellen 1982 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon and MacPhail)

70cl, 43%
Port Ellen

A complex, rich single malt, bottled by Gordon and MacPhail. Port Ellen has become a legendary distillery, known for its stunning peaty flavours.  More info

Port Ellen 1982 - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon and MacPhail)

Dallas Dhu 30 Year Old 1980 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 54.70%
Dallas Dhu

Distilled at Dallas Dhu on the 5th June 1979 and aged in refill butt number 1385 for a whopping 31 years before bottling at cask strength by Signatory. A release of 505 bottles.  More info

Dallas Dhu 30 Year Old 1980 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Caperdonich 37 Year Old 1972 Cask 6733 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 47.70%
Caperdonich

A 37 Year Old release from the (now Mothballed) Caperdonich distillery, owned by Chivas Brothers. The outturn of this cask was only 150 bottles. Supremely collectable.  More info

Caperdonich 37 Year Old 1972 Cask 6733 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)
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Caperdonich 38 Year Old 1972 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 51.80%
Caperdonich

Distilled in October 1978 and aged in cask 6738 before bottling for Duncan Taylor's Rare Auld range in October 2010 at cask strength. A release of 152 bottles.  More info

Caperdonich 38 Year Old 1972 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

Millburn 1972 (Gordon and MacPhail)

70cl, 46%
Millburn

A 1972 vintage from Gordon and MacPhail, matured in refill sherry butts. The Millburn distillery is now closed, so any whisky is decidedly rare.  More info

Millburn 1972 (Gordon and MacPhail)

Caperdonich 37 Year Old 1972 Cask 7437 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 53.50%
Caperdonich

Distilled in November 1972 and aged for 37 years in cask number 7437. This was bottled in July 2010 at Cask Strength for Duncan Taylor's prestigious Rare Auld range. A release of 161 bottles.  More info

Caperdonich 37 Year Old 1972 Cask 7437 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)
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Caperdonich 37 Year Old 1972 Cask 6735 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 51.40%
Caperdonich

A single cask Caperdonich bottled for the Duncan Taylor Rare Auld range. This was distilled in October 1972 and aged for 37 years in cask 6735 before bottling as a release of 180 bottles in August…  More info

Caperdonich 37 Year Old 1972 Cask 6735 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

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)

Littlemill 25 Year Old 1988 (cask 57) (Berry Bros. & Rudd)

70cl, 46%
Littlemill

A rare bottling of Littlemill single malt Scotch whisky, distilled in 1988 - four years before production at the distillery in the Lowlands was stopped. This independent bottling by Berry Brothers &…  More info

Littlemill 25 Year Old 1988 (cask 57) (Berry Bros. & Rudd)
$157.23

Rare Ayrshire 36 Year Old 1975 Cask 564 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 45.10%
Ladyburn

This was distilled at the Ladyburn distillery on the 21st February 1975. It was aged in bourbon barrel 564 for 36 years and bottled by Signatory for their Cask Strength Collection on the 14th…  More info

Rare Ayrshire 36 Year Old 1975 Cask 564 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Port Ellen 26 Year Old 1983 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 54.70%
Port Ellen

A single cask Port Ellen! This was distilled on the 2nd March 1983 and matured for 26 years in a wine treated butt, which was cask number 232, before bottling on the 10th November 2009. A release of…  More info

Port Ellen 26 Year Old 1983 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

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

70cl, 47.30%
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)

Caperdonich - Batch 3 (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

50cl, 45.70%
Caperdonich

This is Batch 3 of That Boutique-y Whisky Company's Caperdonich, bottled at 45.7% abv with a cult graphic-novel-style label featuring the legendary pipe that supposedly ran between Caperdonich and…  More info

Caperdonich - Batch 3 (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)
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North Port (Brechin) 25 Year Old 1977 - Authentic Collection (Cadenhead's)

70cl, 56%
North Port

A very rare single malt whisky from Cadenhead's Authentic Collection, this was distilled at the North Port distillery in 1977 and it was aged for 25 years in a bourbon hogshead before bottling at…  More info

North Port (Brechin) 25 Year Old 1977 - Authentic Collection (Cadenhead's)
$162.07

Rare Ayrshire 34 Year Old 1975 Cask 558 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 45.20%
Ladyburn

An incredibly rare single malt from the Ladyburn distillery in the Lowlands (which is now closed). This Rare Ayrshire was distilled on the 21st February 1975 and aged for 34 years in bourbon barrel…  More info

Rare Ayrshire 34 Year Old 1975 Cask 558 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Rare Ayrshire 34 Year Old 1975 Cask 562 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 46.90%
Ladyburn

A single cask Rare Ayrshire, distilled at Ladyburn on the 21st February 1975 and matured in bourbon barrel number 562 for 34 years before bottling by Signatory on the 2nd March 2009. A release of…  More info

Rare Ayrshire 34 Year Old 1975 Cask 562 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

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

Caperdonich 21 Year Old 1994 (cask 10769) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 57.70%
Caperdonich

A rare bottling of single malt Scotch whisky from the closed Caperdonich distillery, matured in a single refill hogshead for 21 years. This was distilled in July 1994, a while before the distillery…  More info

Caperdonich 21 Year Old 1994 (cask 10769) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

Glenugie 1970 - Rare Old (Gordon and MacPhail)

70cl, 43.50%
Glenugie

A rare vintage from a closed distillery (Glenugie was dismantled in 1983). This was distilled in 1970 and bottled in 2009 for Gordon and MacPhail's exclusive Rare Old range.  More info

Glenugie 1970 - Rare Old (Gordon and MacPhail)

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