Penderyn

Whisky from Penderyn Distillery is unique in many respects. Located in Brecon Beacon National Park, Penderyn is the only whisky distillery in Wales. Furthermore, it uses a very special distillation method in a still called Faraday Still, which has been custom-made for Penderyn.

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Information about the Distillery
51 Bottles
Wales
-3.521281 51.763685
Active
http://www.welsh-whisky.co.uk/
Average tasting notes Tasting Notes
Calculated from 59 Tasting Notes
i
Nosing
Fruit:
Sweet:
Vanilla:
Sherry:
Peat Smoke:
Apple:
Alcohol:
Chocolate:
Floral:
Caramel:
Tropical Fruit:
Herbs:
Zitrus:
Malt:
Banana:
Green Apple:
Pear:
Nuts:
Grass:
Oak:
Honey:
Kiwi:
Lemon:
Spices:
Grape:
Orange:
Raisin:
Heather:
Blackberry:
Coconut:
Seaweed:
Peach:
Fig:
Almonds:
Cinnamon:
Cake:
Maritime Notes:
Strawberry:
Tasting
Fruit:
Sweet:
Peat Smoke:
Spices:
Herbs:
Vanilla:
Malt:
Zitrus:
Sherry:
Oak:
Nuts:
Apple:
Heather:
Alcohol:
Oil:
Maritime Notes:
Chocolate:
Floral:
Dried Fruit:
Grass:
Salt:
Banana:
Orange:
Leather:
Green Apple:
Grapefruit:
Honey:
Tropical Fruit:
Herb:
Berries:
Grape:
Raisin:
Barley:
Pepper:
Iodine:
Blackberry:
Lime:
Seaweed:
Pear:
Almonds:
Finish
Spices:
Fruit:
Sweet:
Oak:
Nuts:
Peat Smoke:
Oil:
Herb:
Chocolate:
Coffee:
Chili:
Sherry:
Salt:
Apple:
Alcohol:
Maritime Notes:
Dried Fruit:
Malt:
Grape:
Banana:
Dark Chocolate:
Pepper:
Green Apple:
Floral:
Seaweed:
Grapefruit:
Herbs:
Zitrus:
Details about the Distillery

The Whisky

Penderyn single malt whisky excels with purity and softness. That's not least due to the special still, which produces a distillate with 92% alcohol. This pure distillation method leads to fruity aromas that are then supplemented by notes from the cask maturation. Penderyn single malt whisky is mainly matured in bourbon and Madeira casks, even if Penderyn Sherrywood is finished in sherry casks.

Penderyn's standard range features the Madeira Single Malt, which is matured in bourbon casks and finished in Madeira casks. Then there's Penderyn Peated Single Malt from bourbon casks and casks that previously held peated Scotch whisky.

The Welsh distillery also releases various single cask bottlings. An unusually smoky member of the Penderyn family is Penderyn Celt, after Myth and Legend the third bottling of the Dragon Series. Like all single malts from the distillery they are unchillfiltered and have no artificial colouring.

The Production

Through comprehensive extensions for approx. 1 million pounds in 2012/2013, Penderyn tripled its annual production capacity to 300,000 litres. While Penderyn may not be among the leading distilleries in Britain in terms of production numbers, it certainly is in terms of an efficient and environmentally-friendly production: The sophisticated distillation technology enables them to save much more energy than with conventional pot stills. 

The Mashing

Until 2014 Penderyn was provided with mash by the regional Brains Brewery on a weekly basis. Meanwhile Penderyn has their own 1.5 ton mash tun and can carry out the whole production process on site. The water comes from their own spring in the Brecon Beacons where it's filtered through basalt and limestone. It's used both for mashing and the production process and for diluting and blending.

Besides whisky, Penderyn Distillery also produces Brecon Gin, Five Vodka and a cream liqueur called Merlin.

The Fermentation

Since 2014 Penderyn has been operating six stainless-steel fermentation tanks, each of which holds 10,000 litres. Fermentation takes three days, and two different yeast strains are used. 

The Distillation

One look at the Faraday Stills at Penderyn tells you that distillation here is different from every other distillery: A pot still with an attached column still makes it possible to produce a 92% spirit in a single distillation run. Responsible for this high-proof purity are the 24 plates in the column, which can be turned on and off to diversify the spirit. In 2013 an additional Faraday Still was installed. It's named after its developer, David Faraday, a descendant of renowned physician Michael Faraday.
But since 2015 Penderyn has also been operating two "normal" 2,500 litre pot stills as we know them from Sottish distilleries. They produce new make with 70-73% abv. It seems like we can look forward to an expansion of the Penderyn range with a different whisky style in a couple of years.

The Storage

At the moment, Penderyn has two warehouses, which are housing roughly 4,000 casks, mainly bourbon and Madeira. The new make is diluted to 63.4% abv before it's filled into casks. The casks containing the new pot still spirit are stored separately from the ones containing spirit from the Faraday stills (since they will probably mature for a longer period of time). Penderyn also has their own bottling plant, which can bottle 2,500 bottles per day.

The History

When the Welsh Whisky Company was founded in 1998, it had already been more than 100 years since whisky production had ceased in Wales. Back then there was a malt whisky distillery in Frongoch near Bala/North Wales. In 2000, the first alcohol ran from the still at Penderyn Distillery in the eponymous village in the middle of Brecon Beacon National Park. The first Penderyn Single Malt was presented in Cardiff in 2014 by none other than Prince Charles himself – the 'Prince of Wales' certainly being an ideal choice. The first bottling was already sold out on the first day. Penderyn Single Malt could quickly gain international acclaim and has probably become one of the leading marketing assets for Wales. 

Penderyn Distillery is privately owned and has about 50 employees as of 2016. 

The Visitor Centre

Sine 2008 Penderyn Distillery has had a visitor centre, which is much frequented end expects about 35,000 visitors for 2016. 

Opening Hours: Daily from 09.00 a.m. until 06.00 p.m. (from September during winter: until 05.00 p.m.) 

Tour: £ 8.50 per person incl. two tasting samples; children under 18 in company of an adult: free (no tasting)

Chronological rating history

User Notes about the Distillery

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03. Jul 2016
Modern industrial unit, a single Faraday still was the original, with another and a gin still now also installed and plans in place to put 2 pot stills in place in the near future. The tour is excellent, although doesn't include malting or casking, the whisky is as always good, especially the special Icon's range, and the Madeira standard.