Robert Fleming: Master Distiller at Tomintoul Distillery for 30 years

A very special anniversary


On April 30, 2020, Robert Fleming celebrated an anniversary that very few of his colleagues in the whisky industry can celebrate: For three decades, he has been working as a master distiller at the same distillery. When he started at the Tomintoul Distillery in Speyside in 1990, he had already gained experience in several distilleries before since 1974.

Whisky in his blood

“I remember as a youth cycling up A’anside with friends around the time the Tomintoul Distillery first started production in 1965. Little did I know that one day I would be fortunate in being only the third person in charge of the distillery and having the privilege of spending 30 years guiding whisky production at this unique Speyside distillery,” Robert Fleming is quoted in a press release from Angus Dee Distillers. Whisky production has a long tradition in his family’s history: The Flemings have been working in the whisky industry here in Speyside for four generations. Robert Fleming grew up in the Glenlivet Estate near Tomintoul Distillery.

The whisky industry has changed during the decades

Since Robert Fleming has become master distiller at Tomintoul the whisky business has changed to follow the changing demand and the preferences of whisky drinkers. There was only one edition of Tomintoul when he started in 1990, a 12-year-old single malt whisky. Today, Tomintoul offers a wide range of whiskies, from those without age statement to standards of different ages, single cask bottlings and special cask maturations and finishes. Robert Fleming was not only involved essentially involved in the production of the Tomintoul Whisky here in the distillery, but also traveled to the USA or Spain to look for suitable cask for the maturation of his whisky.

Special Tomintoul Anniversary editions

On the occasion of the 30th anniversary of Master Distiller Robert Fleming, Tomintoul will release special “Robert Fleming 30th Anniversary” editions during the year, for which the jubilee himself selected the casks. Fleming does not want to claim the honor that he was the one to have developed the Tomintoul Whisky over the past three decades, but also passes it on: “I am honoured to have spent the last 30 Years in charge of Tomintoul Distillery. Over the years the support of the entire team at the distillery, many of whom have been there as long myself, has been essential in producing whisky that we are all incredibly proud of.”

You can meet Robert Fleming in a video on Tomintoul’s website and take a look at the distillery with him:

Image: Angus Dee Distillers PLC