Whisky Magazine Issue 134
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The 'Northern' Highland distilleries
The historic ‘Highland capital' of Inverness (www.explore-inverness.com) makes a great base for touring Scotland's northernmost mainland distilleries, which between them offer a range of superb visitor experiences and the opportunity to take in some of Scotland's most spectacular but least visited countryside.
Some 15 miles south of Inverness, and just off the A9 north-south trunk road through the Highlands, stands Tomatin Distillery (www.tomatin.com). Tomatin dates back to 1897, though you would never know it to look at today's distillery, which has much more of a 1960s appearance about it. Fear not however, as the welcome is warm and the whisky increasingly appreciated by single malt connoisseurs the world over, and especially in the USA.
The entire range has recently been rebranded (see WM 132), and the new look Tomatin is due on the shelves any time now. As well as its comprehensive standard single malt range, Tomatin also offers a stand-alone peated collection under the Cù Bòcan banner.
Instead of heading north from Tomatin into Inverness on the A9, take a detour from the A9 via the B9090 to Royal Brackla Distillery, which is located in peaceful country just south of the seaside town of Nairn (www.lastgreatmalts.com). Unfortunately, it is not open to the public, though plans for a visitor centre have been mooted by owners John Dewar & Sons Ltd.
Brackla was established in 1812, though as with Tomatin you could be forgiven for not realising that, as most of the...