Glenburgie was founded in 1810 under the name 'Kilnflat' by William Paul. It is neighbors with Glenallachie and Glenspey.
|Information about the Distillery|
2 x 11,750 l
2 x 15,000 l
13 x 23,500 l
|Average Tasting Notes||Calculated from 21|
As with some of it’s other Speyside neighbors such as Glenallachie and Glen Spey, sourcing official bottlings of the Benromach located distillery Glenburgie is a difficult task. The first real official bottling from the distillery, a 15 year old, was only released in 2002. This 15 year old remains the only official bottling released by the distillery. There have been a handful of independent bottlings, including a 10 year old bottled by Gordon & MacPhail, and a couple of older releases, including a 20 and 27 year old, which have mainly been bottled by Signatory Vintage.
Over the years, Glenburgie distillery has mainly been used to produce single malt to be used in blends. The spirit produced at the site is a major component in Ballantine’s blended whisky, as well as Old Smuggler. The since-discontinued Glencraig single malt was part of an experiment with different stills at the distillery.
Glenburgie’s production capacity stands at an impressive 4.2 million liter capacity. The water used is taken from local springs in the distillery’s specific area of Speyside, Morayshire.
The Pot Stills
Three spirit stills and three wash stills form the heart of Glenburgie’s high production capacity. Each of the wash stills have a capacity of 11’750 liters, while the spirit stills have a 15’000 liter capacity. Both the wash and spirit stills have a pear shape, with a wide spherical lid and gradually narrowing neck, joined by a mid-size intermediate section.
Glenburgie’s stills are an important part of its history. In 1958, two “Lomond stills” were installed. A Lomond still is used for batch distillation in the same manner as a pot still, but they contained three perforated plates that could be cooled independently, controlling the reflux through the apparatus. The Lomond stills were used in the production in the Glencraig single malt, which has since been discontinued.
Around the same time as the Lomond stills were installed, the distillery ceased to use its own floor maltings. The maltings used are lightly peated, and today are sourced from a nearby industrial site.
The site has three racked warehouses, and uses mostly sherry casks to age its single malt.
Glenburgie has had a series of stop-and-starts in its production life. William Paul founded the distillery in 1810, under the name of Kilnflat distillery, although production did not officially start until 1829. The distillery closed in 1870, and lay unused until Charles Kay revived it in 1878, this time under the name of Glenburgie. In 1884 Alexander Fraser & Co took over the distillery, controlling the site’s operations until the company filed for bankruptcy in 1925, resulting in the distillery lying quiet for another two years. The next decade was fraught with mergers, mothballing and halts in production, as the distillery continued to remain inactive as it changed hands. Production eventually restarted in 1936, when Hiram Walker bought the distillery. In 1958, two Lomond stills were installed which were used to produce another single malt, Glencraig. The production of the two spirits, although occurring on the same premises, was kept completely separate.
In 1987, Allied Lyons acquired the distillery. Under it’s new management, the beginning of the twenty-first century brought a series of changed to Glenburgie. In 2002, the distillery’s first official single malt bottling was released, a 15-year old. In 2004, a GBP 4.5 million renovation occurred at the site, which involved a complete re-build of the distillery. Only the pot stills and customs house remain from the original structure. One year later, Chivas Brothers (under Pernod Ricard) became the new owners of the distillery, under the merger of Allied Domecq. The most recent development in the history of the site was in 2006, when the number of stills was increased from four to six. Despite a tumultuous last century, Glenburgie has gone on to go from strength to strength. The popularity of Ballantine’s blended whisky has peaked in recent years, giving the distillery a business boost.
Glenburgie has no visitor’s centre and does not give tours.