Bruichladdich is Gaelic (Bruchláddich or Bruikladdie) and means corner of the beach or gentle slope of the sea. The distillery was built in the year 1881 by the Brothers Robert, William and John Gourlay Harvey. Read more about it below.↓
The Bruichladdich distillery has a number of different brands, that range from an unpeated malt to the heavily peated malt like the Octomore. There is good variety in the distillery bottlings of the Bruichladdich whiskies. You can find normal standard bottlings such as The Classic Laddie, or a lot of wine and sherry finishes as well as a few experiments such as the X4. Unfortunately the Bruichladdich whiskies don't carry any age statement on their bottles anymore. The maturation in the many different casks develops a lot of flavours and aromas in the different bottlings. You will find all sorts of fruits and spices, if you taste the different vintages from the Bruichladdich distillery. Nearly all of the bottlings of the Bruichladdich distillery are not coloured and un-chill-filtered.
The distillery now has three brands. The first is the normal Bruichladdich as we know it. The second is the Port Charlotte and the third is the Octomore a very heavily peated single malt Scotch whisky. It has a phenol content up to 258 ppm.
There is quite a number of independent bottlings from the Bruichladdich distillery. But due to the fact that most of the Bruichladdich whiskies are kept in their natural state, the whisky connoisseurs don't necessarily have to resort to buying an independent bottling to get an unaltered whisky from the distillery. However, it is still a great way of buying a Bruichladdich scotch with a certain age.
The distillery of the Bruichladdich has a annual output of about 1.5 million litres of pure alcohol. The water for the whisky comes from the Bruichladdich loch and the Octomore spring. The distillery has just increased their number of stills to five, by purchasing a Lomond still.
The low wines still of the Bruichladdich Distillery.Bruichladdich has five pot stills, two wash stills with about 12,000 litres volume and two spirit stills with about 11,000 litres volume. They just recently added a Lomond still to their still room to create a smoother new make spirit. The pot stills at Bruichladdich are very pear-shaped and tall. The Lomond still is an adjustable still so the amount of reflux can be adjusted through different setups of the neck and the lyne arm.
The warehouses are rather flat and are all bricked. Together with the humid and cold climate of the Isle of Islay, the whisky matures very slowly. The variety of casks in the warehouses is very great and you will find a lot of different wine casks from which Jim McEwan can pick his special series bottlings such as the Cuvee. Bruichladdich doesn't only store their scotch on site but also at the Octomore farm they used to belong to.
Bruichladdich emphasizes the local barley a lot. For example, you get the Scottish barley edition or other editions that directly name the farm from which Bruichladdich sourced the barley, that was used to make the Scotch inside the bottle. However they don't malt their own barley but have it malted by the big malting companies.
Bruichladdich is Gaelic (Bruchláddich or Bruikladdie) and means corner of the beach or gentle slope of the sea. The distillery was built in the year 1881 by the Brothers Robert, William and John Gourlay Harvey. The distillery is located on the Isle of Islay near the lake Indaal. The Harvey family ran the distillery until William died in 1936. Afterwards the distillery was sold and mothballed many times until Murray McDavid purchased the distillery in the year 2000. They refurbished the distillery in the old Victorian style and started production. In July 2012 the distillery was bought by Rémy Cointreau, who still own the company today.
The Octomore Farm is a small farm outside the town of Port Charlotte. In 1816 the eldest son of the farm, George Montgomery, built a small distillery on the farms premises and started distilling the Octomore whisky. The production on the very small pot still was about 10,000 litres of whisky per year. After George Montgomery’s death his son and his remaining brothers began to argue over the legal ownership of the farm and the distillery. This was the end of the Octomore distillery up until Bruichladdich took it up as a brand and started using the old farm buildings as warehouses.
At the Bruichladdich distillery you can book tours of the distillery and tastings inside the warehouses. There is also a distillery shop where you can buy the full range of Bruichladdich whiskies.