Scotland’s greenest distillery has reached a major milestone as the first of its maturing spirit officially becomes whisky today, exactly three years after the Ardnamurchan Distillery laid down the first cask of its award-winning spirit.With strict regulations stipulating that spirit has to mature in oak casks for a minimum of three years in Scotland before it can be called Scotch whisky, today marks a landmark moment for the young distillery, opened by HRH The Princess Royal in 2014.
Adelphi Ltd, parent company to Ardnamurchan says there are already strong mounting expectations for its whisky given the quality of its young spirit, which has already won awards and raised eyebrows after it was released to widespread acclaim last year.
The Ardnamurchan Spirit 2016 AD was sold out four times over and only a few months on from its release, prices at auction have already been reaching well above the original retail price. The bottle itself, has also won awards on a national level, coming first place in the Packaging and Design category at the Scottish Design Awards in May this year.
Alex Bruce, Managing Director of Adelphi and The Ardnamurchan Distillery said: ‘This is a hugely important milestone for Ardnamurchan. We have been overwhelmed by the support for the distillery from all over the world, and this is a testament to the great team we have working with us, and their absolute attention to quality. The 500 litre ex-Sherry butt no. 1, filled on the 1st August 2014, is now surrounded by a full warehouse of sister casks, all enjoying the superb west coast maturation climate.”
The Ardnamurchan Distillery is leading the way in the new wave of distilleries opening up across Scotland, especially owing to its green credentials and emphasis on provenance and traceability of its spirit. It is one of the first to be wholly reliant on local renewable energy, using woodchip for heat and hydro-generated electricity.
Since opening, the distillery has become a local landmark in the area with visitors praising the distillery visitor centre and its tours. The surge in visitor numbers have been particularly noticeable this year in the run up to the summer months, with figures already 20% up on last year and these numbers are only expected to increase, especially with the upcoming release of the Ardnamurchan Distillery’s 2nd bottling of mature spirit due to be on the shelves in September.
However if whisky lovers are hoping for a taste of the Ardnamurchan whisky any time soon, they might be disappointed. Adelphi has said it won’t be releasing its whisky until its aged a minimum of seven years, meaning a release date of 2021.