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Distilleries Distillerien


Some of Islay's distilleries, visitor centres, shops, cafés and restaurants are still closed to visitors. Please double check availability directly with the distilleries you like to visit.

Ardbeg

Ardbeg

As close to perfection as makes no difference


Open five days a week for tastings. Must be booked at least 24 hours in advance.

Founded 1815
Owner Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy
Capacity 1,250,000 litres
No. of stills 1 wash (18,000 l)
1 spirit (17,000 l)
Water source Loch Uigeadail
Ardbeg distillery has been closed twice (between 1981-1989 and 1996/1997) and had various owner during these years. For that reason, it wasn’t always easy to find enough high-quality Whisky. So instead of a huge core range, Ardbeg has produced a lot of limited editions over the years, some of them can still be tastet at some of the distillery’s tours.
Look out for Wee Beastie, 47.4%, it’s a monster of a dram!

Ardnahoe

Ardnahoe

Classic peaty Islay whisky


Re-opened the Visitor Centre and café on Monday, 20th July

Founded 2018
Owner Hunter Laing & Co Ltd
Capacity 900,000 litres
No. of stills 1 wash (12,500 l)
1 spirit (7,500 l)
Water source Loch Ardnahoe
Ardnahoe
Islay's first new distillery for nearly 15 years is located on the island's north east coast between the Caol Ila and Bunnahabhain distilleries.
The distillery will make a peated spirit for maturation in used bourbon barrels and Spanish sherry casks.
Everything’s is brand new except the 100 year old Vickers Boby mill. Specially to note are the unusually long descending lyne arms which allows the vapour plenty of copper contact. Unique for Islay are also the traditional style of worm tub condenser.
The bar and shop offers whisky from all over Scotland as well as rum and local gin. Tours

Bowmore

Bowmore

Beautifully balanced Single Malt


Bowmore Gift Shop Experience can be booked online.

Founded 1779
Owner Beam Suntory, Inc.
Capacity 2,000,000 litres
No. of stills 2 wash (20,000 l)
2 spirit (12,000 l)
Water source River Laggan
Bowmore distillery has alwasy been known for making a less smoky Whisky than some other Islay distilleries.
The Distillery has it’s own malting floor, where 30% of the needed malt is produced.
The famose Vault No 1., dating back to the 1700s, is probably the oldest whisky warehouse in Scotland that is still in use. Tours

Bunnahabhain

Bunnahabhain

For lovers of unpeated whisky


Visitor centre and shop is open - tastings / no tours

Founded 1881
Owner Distell Group Ltd.
Capacity 2,7400,000 litres
No. of stills 2 wash (16,800 l)
2 spirit (15,500 l)
Water source Margadale Spring
Bunnahabhain
The whisky from Islay usually has a smoky and peaty note. Bunnahabhain traditionally produces unpeated whisky. However, since a few years about 15% of the total production is also produced as peated whisky (35 - 40ppm).
Special feature: Here you can fill your own bottle directly from a barrel. Tours

Bruichladdich

Bruichladdich

Progressive hebridean distillers

Founded 1881
Owner Rémy Cointreau
Capacity 1’500’000 litres
No. of stills 2 wash (11,500 l)
2 spirit (9,000 l)
Water source An Toran
Since Bruichladdich was taken over by Mark Reynier in 2001, the barley beeing used for the production has been in focus. They not only use different sorts, but also take an interest where the barley has grown. All barley used is grown in Scottland, 40% even comes from Islay.
There are three whisky varietes that are being produced: unpeated Bruichladdich (60%), peated Port Charlotte (20%) and havely peated Octomore (20%). Since a few years the botanist Gin is also produced here.
A highlight are the two barrels for filling your own bottle. Tours

Caol Ila

Caol Ila

Balance between distillery character and maturity

Founded 1846
Owner Diageo plc
Capacity 6,500,000 litres
No. of stills 3 wash (20,000 l)
3 spirit (12,000 l)
Water source Loch Nam Burn
Caol Ila
The biggest distillery on Islay, in terms of capacity, is Caol Ila. It currently produces almost as much as Lagavulin, Laphroaig, Bowmore and Ardbeg put together.
Caol Ila is known for its peated whisky but an increasingly part of unpeated, nutty new make has been produced in the last years. Tours

Kilchoman

Kilchoman

Single Farm Single Malt


Re-opened Visitor Centre on Wednesday 15th July

Founded 2005
Owner Kilchoman Distillery Co.
Capacity 480,000 litres
No. of stills 2 wash (3,000 l)
2 spirit (1,600 l)
Water source Surface water
After more than 120 Years Kilchoman was the first distillery to be newly built on Islay.
As a farm distillery, a quarter of the barley requirements comes from the fields surrounding the distillery. Kilchoman has it‘s own malting floor, where the malt is peated to 20ppm. The distillery takes an interest in producing locally with ingredients coming from Islay and there is a 100% Islay edition that is regularly released. Tours

Lagavulin

Lagavulin

Intensely flavoured, smoky and rich


Visitor centre is reopened. Bookings can be made by phoning 01496 302749 or emailing lagavulin@malts.com

Founded 1816
Owner Diageo plc
Capacity 2,400,000 litres
No. of stills 2 wash (10,500 l)
2 spirit (11,500 l)
Water source Lochan Sholum
Lagavulin
In 2016 Lagavulin celebrated their bicentenaries. Twohundred years of legal distilling, but already in 1742 whisky was produced on site through dozens of illegal stills, so called bothies.
The sudden interest in smoky Islay whisky that startet in the 1990s, can be largely attributed to Lagavulin and the fact that it was marketed as one of the Classic Malts.
Try the Jazzfestival-Edition
Tours

Laphroaig

Laphroaig

Great phenolic character


The souvenir shop is open Thursday - Monday from 11:00 to 16:00. It is necessary to reserve a time for the visit.

Founded 1815
Owner Beam Suntory, Inc.
Capacity 3,3000,000 litres
No. of stills 3 wash (10,500 l)
4 spirit (4,900 l)
Water source Kilbride reservoir
One of the most famous single Malts is Laphroaig. The distillery produces a heavily peated whisky with medicinal notes. Laphroaig has its own malting floors and produces 20% of its requirement at 40-60ppm. Around 70% of the production is reserved for producing single malt. Laphroaig has a great visiter center with tours at various levels. Tours

And close by Gleich nebenan

Jura

Jura

Lightly peated whisky with a gentle Island character

Founded 1810
Owner Whyte & Mackay (Emperador Inc)
Capacity 1,250,000 litres
No. of stills 2 wash (24,500 l)
2 spirit (15,500 l)
Water source Market Loch
Islay’s neighbouring Island is Jura, with its distillery of the same name.
The distillery has two pairs of stills, which are the second largest in scotland.
The sales volumes for Jura single malt have increased rapidly since 2010 and is ist now the third most sold single malt in the UK.
Watch out for the Festival Edition
Tours

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