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The Lost Distilleries

The lost distilleries of Scotland are almost always the most popular and highly sought after amongst whisky collectors and the cognoscenti. Their whisky has become legendary, and not just for its flavour, but for the fact it is incredibly rare and hard to find, though it was once very different...

Scotland was once home to hundreds of distilleries, and in the peak of the 19th century, there were over two hundred of them in operation! This number quickly started to dwindle, as distilleries started closing for various economic reasons.

US Prohibition killed off a number of distilleries whose main income came from export to America, and shortly after the UK was stricken by the economic depression of the 1920s and 1930s. After the Second World War around 70 distilleries closed down for good, though as the UK slowly started to build itself back up again the popularity and growth of whisky continued to increase up until the 1980s, when economic difficulties forced the industry to make cut backs. At that time, blended Scotch was the most popular style of whisky, whilst single malts only really become popular comparatively recently. The result of this was that when cut backs were made, it was done with blended whisky in mind. Smaller distilleries closed, as did those whose whisky didn’t make much of an impact when used as a blending component.

The whisky industry is back on the rise now, and increased interest in single malts has even brought about the reopening of several distilleries. With this in mind, the lost distilleries of the 20th century will always have a special place in our hearts, distilleries like Rosebank, St Magdalene, the intensely smoky Brora , Dallas Dhu , and the epic Port Ellen, amongst many, many others...

The Half-Century Blend - Batch 3

70cl, 47.3%
The Blended Whisky Company

Back in the days of yore ("yore" in the non-specific sense that can mean whatever moment of time we're talking about in any particular sentence), flavour ruled the roost when it came to whisky…  More info

The Half-Century Blend - Batch 3
$644.09
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Carsebridge 45 Year Old 1973 (cask 15566) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 47.7%
Carsebridge

Another stunner from Carsebridge, independently bottled without chill filtration or additional colouring at cask strength by Hunter Laing for The Sovereign range in 2018. This single grain Scotch…  More info

Carsebridge 45 Year Old 1973 (cask 15566) - The Sovereign (Hunter Laing)
$278.58

Garnheath 44 Year Old 1974 (cask 12779) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 47.8%
Garnheath

Single grain from the sadly closed Garnheath distillery, independently bottled by Douglas Laing for the Xtra Old Particular range. This one was distilled in February 1974 and aged in a refill barrel…  More info

Garnheath 44 Year Old 1974 (cask 12779) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
$332.80

Caledonian 42 Year Old 1976 (cask 12769) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 53.3%
Caledonian

42 year old single grain from the Caledonian distillery, independently bottled by Douglas Laing for the Xtra Old Particular range - which is reserved for rare, Very well-matured whiskies. This one…  More info

Caledonian 42 Year Old 1976 (cask 12769) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
$351.01

Carsebridge 41 Year Old 1976 (cask 12768) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 50.8%
Carsebridge

41 year old single grain from the Carsebridge distillery, which has sadly sat silent for many years. This one was distilled in October 1976 and left to age in a refill hogshead until August 2018,…  More info

Carsebridge 41 Year Old  1976 (cask 12768) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
$329.53

Ladyburn 40 Year Old 1974 (cask 74) - Private Cask Collection (William Grant & Sons)

70cl, 48.6%
Ladyburn

It's incredibly rare to see a bottling of Ladyburn single malt Scotch whisky, seeing as the distillery was closed in 1975 after only being founded on the Girvan grain distillery site nine years…  More info

Ladyburn 40 Year Old 1974 (cask 74) - Private Cask Collection (William Grant & Sons)
2
$2,576.58

Littlemill 40 Year Old Celestial Edition

70cl, 46.8%
Littlemill

Though the Littlemill distillery is no longer a thing, the whiskies produced at this Lowland distillery continue to sneak out to whisky enthusiasts - and this is a big one. This is a 40 year old old…  More info

Littlemill 40 Year Old Celestial Edition
$6,428.57

Brora 37 Year Old 1977 (Special Release 2015)

70cl, 50.4%
Brora

The fourteenth annual release of Brora single malt in Diageo's Special Releases is also the oldest in the series - a 37 year old 1977 vintage matured in refill American oak hogsheads. A release of…  More info

Brora 37 Year Old 1977 (Special Release 2015)
3
$2,141.78

North Port Brechin 36 Year Old 1981 (cask 1708) - 30th Anniversary Gift Box (Signatory)

70cl, 57.2%
North Port

A rare whisky from the closed North Port distillery (it had many names over the years, with North Port and Brechin among the most well known). This one is 36 years old, distilled in November 1981 and…  More info

North Port Brechin 36 Year Old 1981 (cask 1708) - 30th Anniversary Gift Box (Signatory)
$1,368.81

Dallas Dhu 36 Year Old 1971 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46.2%
Dallas Dhu

A very collectible and well-aged bottling of Dallas Dhu single malt, matured in a single refill hogshead for 36 years - from April 1971 to January 2008. Just 161 bottles of this rare whisky were…  More info

Dallas Dhu 36 Year Old 1971 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)
$483.11

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1982 (cask 12282) - Xtra Old Particular Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 54.4%
Port Ellen

Released in celebration of Douglas Laing's 70th anniversary, this sublime single malt from Port Ellen was distilled in November 1982 and matured for 35 years in a single refill butt until October…  More info

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1982 (cask 12282)  - Xtra Old Particular Platinum (Douglas Laing)
$1,927.06

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1982 (cask 2040) - 30th Anniversary Gift Box (Signatory)

70cl, 55.1%
Port Ellen

A bottling of very rare Port Ellen single malt, distilled in September 1982 and left to age in a single refill sherry butt for 35 years, before being bottled in July 2018. 567 bottles were produced…  More info

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1982 (cask 2040) - 30th Anniversary Gift Box (Signatory)
$1,690.88

Brora 35 Year Old (2012 Special Release)

70cl, 48.1%
Brora

The oldest release to date of this rare single malt - this 35 year old Brora was bottled at 48.1%abv from re-fill ex-Bourbon casks. Only 1,586 bottles were produced of this excellent single malt in…  More info

Brora 35 Year Old (2012 Special Release)
$1,986.12

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1977 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 50.4%
Port Ellen

This is a fabulous old Port Ellen from Douglas Laing's stellar Old and Rare Platinum Selection. It was distilled in August 1977, some six years before the distillery shut its doors for good, and the…  More info

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1977 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)
1
$2,141.78

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1977 - Old & Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 49.3%
Port Ellen

This is a very special bottling of Islay single malt Scotch whisky. It was distilled back in 1977 at the legendary Port Ellen distillery and matured in a single cask for 35 years. It was then bottled…  More info

Port Ellen 35 Year Old 1977 - Old & Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)
$2,415.54

Caledonian 33 Year Old 1982 - Single Cask (Master of Malt)

70cl, 51.5%
Caledonian

A yummy 33 year old single cask bottling of single grain Scotch whisky from the now closed Caledonian distillery! Distilled in October 1982 and bottled in January 2016, it aged in cask number 1254, a…  More info

Caledonian 33 Year Old 1982 - Single Cask (Master of Malt)
1
$229.69

Caledonian 33 Year Old (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

50cl, 50.3%
Caledonian

Founded in 1855 and originally called Edinburgh distillery, Caledonian (or 'The Cally' as it was known by those who worked there) was located by Haymarket station in Edinburgh. Once home the largest…  More info

Caledonian 33 Year Old (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)
1
$163.12
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Convalmore 32 Year Old 1984 (Special Release 2017)

70cl, 48.2%
Convalmore

Convalmore is a familiar face in the Diageo Special Releases line-ups, with the 2017 outturn marking the closed distillery's fourth appearance in the series. And this superb 32 year old shows exactly…  More info

Convalmore 32 Year Old 1984 (Special Release 2017)
$1,068.21
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Port Ellen 32 Year Old 1979 - Old & Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 54.8%
Port Ellen

A sublime single cask bottling from the revered Port Ellen Distillery. This 1979 vintage Islay single malt Scotch whisky was matured in a single refill sherry butt for 32 years before it was bottled…  More info

Port Ellen 32 Year Old 1979 - Old & Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)
$1,604.99

Carsebridge 30 Year Old 1982 (cask 74690) - Artist #7 (La Maison du Whisky)

70cl, 50.8%
Carsebridge

An independently bottled single grain from the Carsebridge distillery, presented as part of the Artist series by La Maison du Whisky. It was aged in a single hogshead from 1982 and bottled in 2017…  More info

Carsebridge 30 Year Old 1982 (cask 74690) - Artist #7 (La Maison du Whisky)
$259.31

Port Ellen 30 Year Old 1982 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 53.1%
Port Ellen

Douglas Laing properly go for it with their Old and Rare Platinum range, picking only the most ridiculously desirable whiskies to join the impressive selection. Speaking of ridiculously desirable,…  More info

Port Ellen 30 Year Old 1982 - Old and Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)
2
$1,604.99

Port Ellen 30 Year Old 1982 - Old and Rare (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 51.8%
Port Ellen

A marvellous and decidedly rare Port Ellen distilled in April 1982 and aged for a massive 30 years in a single refill hogshead before bottling in April 2012 for Douglas Laing's premium Old and Rare…  More info

Port Ellen 30 Year Old 1982 - Old and Rare (Douglas Laing)
$1,604.99

Brora 30 Year Old (2007 Special Release)

70cl, 55.7%
Brora

Just 2,958 individually numbered bottles were released. This Brora 30 year old was matured in refill American and European oak casks and was released in September of 2007. Please note: The…  More info

Brora 30 Year Old (2007 Special Release)
$1,604.99

Port Ellen 30 Year Old 1979 - Old Malt Cask Commemorative (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 55.6%
Port Ellen

A rare 30 year old bottling from the Douglas Laing 'Old Malt Cask' range. One of just 234 bottles. This bottle was part of a private collection - if you'd like more detailed photos just get in…  More info

Port Ellen 30 Year Old 1979 - Old Malt Cask Commemorative (Douglas Laing)
$1,604.99

St Magdalene 30 Year Old 1982 - Old & Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 58.5%
St. Magdalene

A stunning single malt Scotch whisky from the legendary lost distillery St. Magdalene. This 30 year old single cask expression was matured in a refill sherry butt from 1982 to February 2013, then…  More info

St Magdalene 30 Year Old 1982 - Old & Rare Platinum (Douglas Laing)
$2,147.15

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