Distillery in Focus: Glengyle
Name: Glengyle Distillery (“Hill of warning”).
Telephone: 01586 552009
Address: 85 Longrow Street, Campbeltow, Argyll, PA28 6EX
Visitor centre: Yes (Springbank Distillery)
Owner: Mitchell's Glengyle Limited, privately owned.
Established in 1872.
Stills: 1 Wash and 1 Spirit stills.
Percentage of single malts: 100%.
Casks used for maturation are sherry, bourbon, Port and rum.
|The Glengyle distillery|
First release of Kilkerran, the whisky distilled in Glengyle was released in 2009 as Kikerran WIP (Work in Progress), followed by a second release in 2010 and a third one in 2011.
Since its reopening in 2004, Glengyle distillery has mainly been used for experimental purposes. In 2006, a triple-distilled and heavily peated spirit was produced during one week end at the end of May (Note: the distillery is apparently running one week per year).
History of Glengyle
Glengyle distillery was built in 1872, during the whisky boom in Campbeltown, by a farmer, William Mitchell. He previously worked and owned the Springbank distillery with his brother, but following disputes with his brother, he decided to be independent. In 1886, during Alfred Barnard's visit, the proprietor was registered under the name of Wm. Mitchell and Co. and the distillery output was 90'000 gallons. In 1919, the distillery was sold for £300 to Highland Malt distilleries. The production ceased in 1925 and was auctioned the same year, at the same time as Ardlussa Distillery. Robert Armour and Sons bought the distillery during that auction for a depot and was transformed in 1929 by Mr Craig as a garage. Beginning 1940, the distillery was rented to the Campbeltown miniature rifle club and bought at the end of that year by the Bloch Brothers. Production was not restarted due to the WWII restrictions. Campbell Henderson bought the distillery in 1957 but failed to reopen it. In 1970, it was acquired by the Kintyre Farmer Cooperative as a depot for agricultural feedstuff as well as a sales office. In November 2000, Glengyle distillery was bought by the great great nephew of William Mitchell, Mr Hedley Wright, the head of J&A Mitchell & Co Ltd, the owners of Springbank Distillery. Reconstruction of the distillery started in 2001 and in January 2002, the stills of the former Ben Wyvis distillery at Invergordon were bought and slightly modified to adapt to the distillery. The mill was bought second hand from the Craigellachie Distillery in Dufftown and all the other equipment (e.g, mash tun, washabacks) were bought new. The distillery was inaugurated the 25th March 2004 and the first spirit was distilled the same year. End of May 2006, the distillery was distilling triple-distilled spirit and some double-distilled heavily peated spirit (barley 45+ ppm). The malted barley is currently prepared on the malting floors of Springbank distillery and most of the distillery premises are empty.
|The inside of the still house with its 4 washbacks and the mash tun on the top right.||The interior of the mash tun.|
|The former Ben Wyvis wash (right) and spirit still (left) at Glenglye.||The filing store at Glengyle distillery, with the cask 329 filled with heavily peated Kilkerran whisky.|
|Kilkerran Work in Progress, 5 YO, OB, 46%, B: 2009||Rating: 10/20|
|Kilkerran Work in Progress 2, OB, 46%, B: 2010||Rating: 13/20|
|Kilkerran Work In Progress 3, OB, 46%, B: 2011||Rating: 13/20|
|Kilkerran Work In Progress 4, OB, 46%, B: 2012||Rating: 14/20|
|Kilkerran Work in Progress 5 Bourbon, OB, 46%, B: 2013||Rating: 13/20|
|Kilkerran Work in Progress 5 Sherry, OB, 46%, B: 2013||Rating: 14/20|
|Kilkerran Work In Progress 6 Bourbon,OB, 46%, B: 2014||Rating: 13/20|
|Kilkerran Work In Progress 6 Sherry,OB, 46%, B: 2014||Rating: 14/20|
|Kilkerran Work in Progress 7 Bourbon, OB, 54.1%, B:2015.||Rating: 16/20|
|Kilkerran Work in Progress 7 Sherry, OB, 46%, B:2015.||Rating: 14/20|
|Kilkerran 8 YO Cask Strength, OB, 56.2%, B:2017||Rating: 14/20|
|Kilkerran 12 YO, OB, 46%, B:2016.||Rating: 14/20|