Whisky Magazine Issue 122
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Where connoisseurs can enjoy a distillery experience
Elsewhere in this issue we explore how the economic turbulence which has blighted the ‘Eurozone' during the past few years has affected Glen Grant single malt.
Another single malt brand, produced some five miles south of Glen Grant, which also has a strong reliance on European sales, is Aberlour. The distillery is owned by Pernod Ricard through its Chivas Brothers subsidiary. It boasts a lengthy ‘French connection', and Chivas Brothers' Brand Director for Malts, Neil Macdonald, points out that “Aberlour was one of the first single malt distilleries to be acquired by a non-British company when France's Pernod started its acquisition in 1974. One consequence was that Pernod focussed on building the reputation of Aberlour in France and played a key role in building the single malt category there. To this day Aberlour is brand leader in this key market.”
2012 saw a 25 per cent fall in single malt sales across France, partly due to a 15 per cent tax increase imposed that year, and Aberlour's overall six per cent growth in the same 12 month period implies a significant degree of ingenuity and energy in terms of promotion. In total, some 2.8 million bottles of Aberlour were sold in 2012, confirming the brand's position as the seventh best-selling malt in the world.
Part of Aberlour's ability to expand sales in times of adversity may lie in a 2010 makeover for the portfolio, described at the time by a Chivas Brothers' spokesperson as “…a move designed to better refle...