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BENRIACH         10 years old 70o proof          
Last bottle and empty
CONNOISSEURS CHOICE
Distilled 1969
Bottled 1979
From the Ben Riach Distillery
Gordon & Macphail, Elgin

BENRIACH         20 years old 40 %              
CONNOISSEURS CHOICE
Distilled 1969
Bottled 1989
Proprietors:
The Longmorn - Glenlivet Distilleries Ltd
Gordon & Macphail, Elgin

BENRIACH         8 years old 62,4 %               
Original CASK STRENGHT
Distilled 1982
Bottled 1990
Gordon & Macphail, Elgin

BENRIACH         15 years old 40 %         
CONNOISSEURS CHOICE
LAST  BOTTLE  AND  EMPTY
Distilled 1976
Bottled 1991
Proprietors:
The Longmorn - Glenlivet Distilleries Ltd
Gordon & Macphail, Elgin

BENRIACH         10 years old 43 %          INFO      
THE HERITAGE SELECTION
The Benriach Distillery Co,
Elgin, Morayshire

BENRIACH         34 years old 50,4 %        INFO     
PEERLESS
A Unique Whisky of Distinction
Fons et Origo D T C
Cask Strenght
date distilled 11.1968
date bottled 01.2003
Cask no. 2593
137 bottles
genummerde flessen
Duncan Taylor & Co.

BENRIACH         9 years old 40%              
CONNOISSEURS CHOICE
Distilled 1982
Bottled 1991
Proprietors:
The Longmorn - Glenlivet Distilleries Ltd
Gordon & Macphail, Elgin

BENRIACH   geen leeftijd vermelding 62,9%        
Distilled 1982
Original CASK STRENGHT
Natural High Strenght
Gordon & Macphail, Elgin

THE BENRIACH      geen leeftijd vermelding 40 %         INFO
HEART OF SPEYSIDE
Matured in oak casks
Benriach Floor Maltings

THE BENRIACH         Aged 10 years 40 %          INFO
FROM THE HEART OF SPEYSIDE
CURIOSITAS
SINGLE PEATED MALT
Benriach Floor Maltings
Benriach Distillery Co, Morayshire

THE BENRIACH         Aged 12 years 43 %            INFO
HEART OF SPEYSIDE
Matured in The Heart of Speyside
Benriach Floor Maltings

THE BENRIACH         Aged 16 years 43 %           INFO  
HEART OF SPEYSIDE
Matured in The Heart of Speyside
Benriach Floor Maltings

THE BENRIACH                  Aged 20 years 43 %      INFO      
HEART OF SPEYSIDE
Matured in The Heart of Speyside
Benriach Floor Maltings

THE BENRIACH         Aged 18 years 46 %            INFO
HEART OF SPEYSIDE
LIMITED 1986 RELEASE
PEATY BOURBON BARREL
Cask No. 316
Cask Type: Barrel (Peated)
Distilled 1986
Date of Bottling: Aug/04
240 Bottles
Benriach Floor Maltings
Benriach Distillery Co, Morayshire

BENRIACH         10 years old 46 %         
SIGNATORY VINTAGE 1994
THE UN - CHILLFILTERED COLLECTION
HEAVILY PEATED
Distilled on: 20.06.1994
Bottled on: 10.09.2004
Matured in: Hogshead
Cask No; 1644
Genummerde flessen
425 Bottles
No Chillfiltration, Natural Colour
Signatory Vintage
Scotch Whisky Co, Ltd, Edinburgh

THE BENRIACH   Aged  10 years 46 %          INFO  
FROM THE HEART OF SPEYSIDE
CURIOSITAS
SINGLE PEATED MALT
Benriach Floor Maltings
Benriach Distillery Co, Morayshire

THE BENRIACH   Aged 11 years 46 %        INFO      
HEART OF SPEYSIDE
LIMITED 1994 RELEASE
PEATED EXPRESSION
Distilled 1994
Date of Bottling May/05
Cask No. 828
Cask Type Hogshead
Numbered Bottles
357 Bottles
Benriach Distillery Co, Morayshire

THE BENRIACH   Aged 20 years 55 %          INFO
HEART OF SPEYSIDE
LIMITED 1984 RELEASE
Distilled 1984
Date of Bottling Dec/04
Cask No. 627
Cask Type Hogshead
Numbered Bottles
253 Bottles
Benriach Distillery Co, Morayshire

THE BENRIACH   Aged 34 years 51.2 %           INFO    
HEART OF SPEYSIDE
LIMITED 1970 RELEASE
Distilled 1970 Cask No. 4005
Bottling Dec/04 Numbered
Cask Type Hogshead Date of
Bottles 254 Bottles Benriach
Distillery Co, Morayshire

THE BENRIACH   Aged 38 years 50 %        INFO
HEART OF SPEYSIDE
LIMITED 1966 RELEASE
Distilled 1966
Cask No. 2382
Cask Type Hogshead
Date of Bottling Dec/04
Numbered Bottles
158 Bottles
Benriach Distillery Co, Morayshire

THE BENRIACH    aged 21 years 46 %          INFO       
FROM THE HEART OF SPEYSIDE
AUTHENTICUS
PEATED MALT
Ben Riach Floor Maltings
Non Chill Filtered
The Benriach Distillery Co, Ltd, Morayshire

BENRIACH      28 years old 56,8%               
SIGNATORY VINTAGE 1975
CASK STRENGTH COLLECTION
Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Distilled on: 22.12.1975
Bottled on: 06.10.2004
Matured in: Sherry Hogshead
Cask No: 7216
222 Numbered Bottles
Natural Colour
Signatory Vintage
Scotch Whisky Co, Ltd, Edinburgh

THE BENRIACH  1994    Aged 12 years 58,9 %   INFO
BENRIACH HEAVILY PEATED
Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Distilled 20. 6 1994
Bottled September 2006
Matured in Hogshead
Cask No.06/143/2
CHATEAU d'YQUEM FINISH
287 Bottles
BOTTLED FOR MANUFACTUM
by Signatory Vintage
Scotch Whisky Co, Ltd, Edinburgh

BENRIACH     48 %          INFO
BIRNIE  MOSS
INTENSELY  PEATED  SPEYSIDE
SINGLE  MALT  SCOTCH  WHISKY
Non Chill Filtered
Natural Colour
Benriach Distillery Co, Morayshire

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                THE   BENRIACH   INFO                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               

Aged  12 years  50 %                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

TRIPLE  DISTILLED                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

HORIZONS                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           

Single Malt Scotch Whisky                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          

From the Heart of Speyside                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                

Limited production                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    

Non Chill Filtered,  Natural Colour                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

Distilled & Bottled in Scotland                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              

Benriach Distillery Co, Morayshire


THE  BENRIACH INFO
30  years old  50 %                                   
Estblished 1898     
THIRTY  YEARS  OLD
Matured in the Heart of Speyside
Carefully Controlled Malting, Distilling
& Maturation using age old Methods
HEART  OF  SPEYSIDE
Single Malt Scoptch Whisky
Non Chill Filtered
Natural Colour
Distilled & Bottled In Scotland
Benriach Distillery Co, Morayshire

The Western Highlands
Speyside
BENRIACH / BEN RIACH(1894 - 1903) (1965 - 2002) (2005

Longmorn, Elgin, Morayshire. Licentiehouder: The Longmorn - Glenlivet Distillery Ltd. On-derdeel van The Chivas and Glenlivet Group. Eigendom van Seagram.
Gesticht in 1894 - 1895 door John Duff, die een jaar eerder Longmorn had gebouwd. Het was het bijna hoogtepunt van de whisky-hausse, die er heerste.
Reden voor de bouw hier van de distilleerderij was de aanwezigheid van veel en goed water afkomstig van de Mannoch Hill en de aanwezigheid van turf.
De markt stortte in 1899 in, ingeluid met de teloorgang van de gebroeders Pattsion, whis-kyhandelaren en blenders te Leith, die frauduleus bankroet gingen.
Longmorn bleef in produktie, maar Ben Riach ging tijdelijk dicht, en bleef dit vijf en zestig jaar!
In 1965 werd Ben Riach weer opgestart.
Gedurende die jaren was alleen de mouterij in gebruik ten behoeve van Longmorn.
Ben Riach heeft nog steeds een vloermouterij, maar de kapaciteit van 700 ton per jaar is niet toereikend om ook Longmorn te kunnen beleveren.
De ketels van Ben Riach zijn kleiner dan die van Longmorn en de whisky is lichter dan die van Longmorn.
In de jaren zeventig werden er vier ketels bijgebouwd, waardoor het aantal ketels op acht kwam, vier Wash stills van elk 15000 liter en vier Spirit stills van elk 9500 liter.
De ketels worden indirekt met stoom verhit en de kapaciteit is drie miljoen liter spirit per jaar.
De Mash tun is 6,08 ton, de acht Wash backs hebben een inhoud van elk 30.000 liter.
In 1898 werden Ben Riach en Longmorn overgenomen door James Grant die later werd opgevolgd door zijn zoon's P.J.C. Grant en R.L. Grant.
De Grants van Ben Riach en Longmorn en die van Glen Grant werden in 1970 verenigd toen ze met de whiskyblenders Hill Thomson & Co, Ltd te Edinburgh, en The Glenlivet & Glen Grant Distilleries Limited, samen gingen.
De laatsten waren al in 1953 samen gegaan.
In 1978 werd deze groep overgenomen door The Seagram Co, Limited.
Op 18 December 2000 wordt Seagram voor 8,15 miljard dollar overgenomen door Diageo en Pernod Ricard. Diageo vetaalt 5 miljard (= 61 %) en Pernod Ricard de rest.
Pernod Ricard krijgt de Schotse whiskymerken en distilleerderijen in zijn bezit.
Ben Riach werd in in 1999 gesloten.
Ben Riach werd van de Chivas Groep overgenomen voor £ 5,4 miljoen door de Benriach Distillery Company Ltd, waarin Geoff Bell en Wayne Kiefwetter, Zuid - Afrikaanse zakenmensen, en Billy Walker, ex Allied Distillers, Ex Inver House, ex Chivas en ex Burnt Stewart medewerker het voor het zeggen hebben.
Het is de bedoeling dat er September 2004 een 12 jaar oude, 16 en 20 jaar oude maltwhiskies worden uitgebracht.,
Ook komt er een peaty whisky uit, gedistilleerd tussen 1993 en 1996.
Alan McConnochie afkomstig van Tobermory wordt de distilleerderij manager.

1894   John Duf f & Co sticht Ben Riach, de ernaast gelegen Longmorn is al in
zijn bezit  
1899   John Duff raakt in financiële moeilijkheden, moet Ben Riach als onderpand
aan de bank geven, die Ben Riach verkoopt aan Longmorn Distilleries Co.  
1903   Ben Riach gaat in de mottenballen.
De mouterij blijft in produktie t.b.v. Longmorn   
1965   Ben Riach is het eigendom van The Glenlivet Distilleires Ltd Ben Riach
wordt vernieuwd en weer opgestart    
1978   Seagram wordt de eigenaar en Ben Riach wordt onderdeel van
 Chivas Brothers.
1983   Seagram start de produktie van een peated malt
1985   Er worden twee ketels bijgebouwd, er zijn nu vier ketels
1994   De eerste, een 10 jaar oude botteling wordt uitgebracht
1999   De mouterij wordt gesloten
2001   Pernod Ricard neemt Chivas Brothers over
2002   Ben Riach gaat in October in de mottenballen
2004   Intra Trading uit Zuid Afrika neemt samen met Billy Walker, eerder manager
bij Burn Stewart, Ben Riach over voor £ 5.4 miljoen  In dit bedrag zijn ook 5000 vaten gelagerde whisky in de lij ftijd van
         3 tot 34 jaar oud
   
  
Augustus 2007
Ben Riach brengt drie nieuwe expressies uit: allen gestookt van zwaar geturfrookte gerst.
Alle drie gelagerd in Bourbon-vaten, en dan nagerijpt in respectievelijk Pedro Ximinez Sherry Butts (Heredotus Fumosus), Aged Tawny Port Hogsheads (Importanticus Fumosus) en Jamaican Dark Rum Barrels (Arumaticus Fumosus).
De whisky is niet koud gefilterd, niet gekleurd, en gebotteld op 46 %

Ongeveer 4 jaar nadat Billy Walker met zijn twee Zuid - Afrikaanse compagnons Geoff Bell
en Wayne Kiesewetter neemt dit drietal Glendronach nu over (September 2008) van Pernod Ricard

Van Glendronach wordt nu alleen een 12- en een 33 jaar oude whisky uitgebracht

De voorraad van Glendronach zou van heel hoge kwaliteit zijn, vooral whiskies gelagerd in
sherry  vaten, alleen in de laatste jaren zijn er veel Bourbon vaten gebruikt

November 2009

Benriach made pre-tax losses of 1.88 000.000 Pounds in 2008, the profit in 2007 was
1.95 000.000 Pounds

The 2008 figures were severely impacted by a 5.35.000.000 Pounds impairment charge
against goodwill at Glendronach distillery

Glendronach was bought from Chivas Brothers (owners Pernod Ricard) in 2008 for
30.000.000 Pounds

Also in November the visitor centre and offices at Glendronach flooded for the 2e time.

Benriach's 2008 accounts showed turnover of 12.08.000.000- against 8.13.000.000 Pounds
a year earlier.

The firm's net debt at the end of last year was 15.76.000.000- and at the end of 2007 3.4.000.000 Pounds.

"Horizons" - the 12 years old, triple distilled BenRiach is one of the most unique whiskies
to be released by The BenRiach Distillery Company. Originally matured in ex - bourbon barrels, the triple distilled BenRiach
has been allowed to finish in Oloroso Sherry casks,
and has derived a number of flavours  and aromas specific to the sherry casks.

Located in the north - east region of Morayshire, the Heartland of Malt Scotch Whisky,
BenRiach displays all the traditional charm of a Speyside distillery. Built by John Duff in 1898, BenRiach is one of the few distilleries with its own on - site floor malting, and draws Its water from the Burnside Springs.

"Horizons" the 12 years old, triple distilled BenRiach is one of the most unique whiskies to
be released by The BenRiach Distillery Company. Traditionally most single malt Scotch whiskies are distilled twice, however during the late '90s BenRiach experimented with some
limited production runs of triple distilled whisky, nd we have allowed the whisky to mature for a minimum of 12 years before giving you the opportunity to sample the fruits of our labour.

Triple distillation means that the raw spirit produced comes off the still at a higher alcohol
trength, and the whisky is more fruity and floral than a traditional double distilled Ben Riach - quite different in character and certainly a rarity amongst single malt whiskies.

Originally matured in ex - bourbon barrels, the triple distilled BenRiach has been allowed
to finish in Oloroso Sherry casks, and has derived a number of flavours and aromas specific
to the sherry casks

BENRIACH / GLENDRONACH

22 March 2013

The BenRiach Distillery Company has bought ( with Bille Walker, Geoff Bell and Wayne Kiesewetter, two South African entrepreneurs)  the Glenglassaugh, Portsoy, Banffshire

Glenglassaugh Distillery was bought in 2008 by the Amsterdam based Scaent Group, now
the Lumiere Group fot €5.000.000 with a production capacity of 1.1.000.000 liters alcohol a year

BEN  RIACH  DISTILLERY

Mash tun: 1 x 6.08 tonnes
Washbacks: 8 x 30.000 ltres
4 wash stills x 15000 litres
4 spirit stills x 9500 litres
Output: 3.000.000  litres

2013:

Output: 2.000.000 litres
Included peated spirit 250.000 litres
Included triple distilles spirit 25.000  litres

Included 60 % beieng sold to Chivas Brothers for their blends.

Located in the north - east region of Morayshire, the Heartland of Malt Scotch Whisky,
Benriach displays all the traditional charm of a Speyside distillery. Built by John Duff in
1898 , Benriach is one of the few distilleries with its own on - site floor malting, and
draws its water from the Burnside Springs.

The Spey Valley is home to many of Scotland's great whiskies, but The Benriach has its
own uniqueness, which is borne from the particular methods and skills of the Benriach
men who craft the whisky, the ingredients they use, the distinctive copper stills and the
high quality oak casks selected for maturation.

Once distilled, the whisky is filled to casks and allowed to mature on - site in our traditional,
stone - walled, earthen - floored "dunnage warehouses which provide the perfect
conditions in which to age whisky.

Within these warehouses we store an impressive inventory of over 20.000 casks, some
of which date as far back as 1966, and it is from this rich inventory of maturing whiskies
that our Master Distiller has carefully selected the handful of casks from which he has
drawn the whisky to create this exceptional bottling.

Produced in the traditional style, this whisky is non chill filtered, and is bottled at 50 %
Alc.vol (US 100 degrees proof),

Tuesday 07 July 2015

WHISKY entrepreneur Billy Walker yesterday hinted at further acquisitions for the BenRiach distillery business he heads after it announced record results and revealed plans to invest more than £25 million.
BenRiach, which also owns the GlenDronach and Glenglassaugh single malt whisky brands, said pre-tax profits rose by 24 per cent to £11.1 million last year on the back on a 17.6 per cent rise in turnover to £41.5m.
Taiwan's consumers have a taste for premium brands so it'a fit
Billy Walker
Growth in sales across markets such as Taiwan, Germany, Africa and the US helped drive the strong performance of the Newbridge business.
>
The expansion of the BenRiach business since Walker and his two South African business partners purchased it a decade ago has been accelerated through acquisitions of the GlenDronach distillery in 2008 and the Glenglassaugh distillery in 2013, and Walker yesterday said that further deals were possible.
"We're open-minded and if something came up adding value and balance to the business, we would certainly consider it," he said.
Walker, the firm's managing director, said it plans to invest about £25m over the next two years to take advantage of the significant opportunities it sees for further growth.
"We continue to make significant strides in brand development where we are concentrating our efforts on the top end of market.
"We are an independent, boutique business and we see each distillery as having 'Grand Cru' provenance."
Walker said the investment plans were being supported by the Royal Bank of Scotland, and he described the bank's support in recent years as "magnificent".
Export markets will be a key focus for the company's growth plans.
Sales director Alistair Walker said the last 12 months had seen unprecedented demand for high-end brands such as those produced by BenRiach.
"We have a wide customer base and currently ship to over forty countries but there is still potential for growth in the likes of Hong Kong, Singapore, Korea and much of Africa and South America. So I believe the future for all our brands is tremendously exciting."
>
Taiwan was described as a "huge" market for the company, and Walker said: "It's part of the overall spirits boom in Asia and its consumers have a taste for premium brands so it's a great fit with our growth strategy."
Although there was growth across the company's brands in 2014, Walker said the Glenglassaugh range in particular had significantly outperformed against the company's forecasts.
"Another recent high point was the launch of our BenRiach ten years old single malt in 2015, the first core range expression to be produced predominantly from whisky distilled under The BenRiach Distillery Company's stewardship."
Billy Walker, a master blender, and his two South African partners Geoff Bell and Wayne Kieswetter, purchased BenRiach in 2004.
When the company posted its first full year's figures in 2005, turnover was £4.62m, pre-tax profit was £241,716 and the company employed just 12 people. The firm currently employs 120 people across its four sites.
The record profits cap a highly successful year for the Newbridge-headquartered group, which was recently highlighted by the London Stock Exchange among a range of companies to inspire Britain

Brown-Forman buys BenRiach for £285m



27 April, 2016

The Brown-Forman Corporation has announced that it has bought the BenRiach Distillery Company
Limited for approximately £285 million.
When completed, the purchase will bring three single malt scotch whisky brands into Brown-Forman’s
growing whiskey portfolio: The GlenDronach, BenRiach, and Glenglassaugh.
The company says the purchase will include brand trademarks, three malt distilleries, a bottling plant, and
the company’s headquarters in Edinburgh, Scotland. The BenRiach Distillery Company, which has a
workforce of 165 employees including 55 seasonal and casual workers, will operate as a subsidiary of
Brown-Forman.
Brown-Forman CEO Paul Varga said: “The acquisition of these super premium brands will allow Brown-
Forman to re-enter one of our industry’s most exciting and consistent growth segments, single malt scotch
whisky. The Glendronach, BenRiach, and Glenglassaugh single malt brands are rich in history and we
believe they will continue to prosper and grow in our hands.”
Varga noted that Brown-Forman previously was a minority shareholder of Glenmorangie plc and marketed
Glenmorangie in the US and Canada from 1992 to 2005 and in continental Europe and certain Asian
markets from 2000 to 2005. Brown-Forman sold its part of Glenmorangie’s sale to Moet Hennessy in 2005.
Billy Walker, managing director of The BenRiach Distillery Company Limited said: “Our team have
energised these distilleries and engaged creatively and successfully with the premium end of the market.
We are very confident that Brown-Forman will take The GlenDronach, BenRiach, and Glenglassaugh
brands to the next level and fulfill their full potential, and prove to be worthy custodians of these historic
distilleries.”
The GlenDronach distillery, located in the hills of the Scottish Highlands, was founded in 1826.
GlenDronach produces a range of ultra-premium single malt whiskies and is most noted for its sherried
whiskies.
Located in the heart of Speyside, The BenRiach distillery began making malt whisky in 1898 and is known
for experimenting with wood finishes producing whisky from both non-peated and peated malted barley.
The Glenglassaugh distillery, founded in 1875, is located on the coast


Vibrant when young, it matures well – especially in refill casks where fruits take on a more tropical edge and extra spiciness steadily develops.

In the latter years of the Seagram era, Benriach produced a smoky distillate for blending purposes. The enthusiastic reaction to this style when its new owner bottled examples means a peated season takes place every year. A wide range of finishes – of both styles – is also available. Many of the bottlings have been given Latin names and the brand name has been rewritten as BenRiach.

The distillery is currently operated by Jack Daniel’s producer, Brown-Forman.

‘The best laid schemes o’mice and men gang aft a-gley’

Robert Burns could well have been writing about John Duff [builder of Glenlossie and Longmorn] and his intention to establish a whisky-making fiefdom close to Elgin. His Longmorn distillery had been built in 1893, and having achieved early success he decided what was needed was another  plant next door. In 1897, he built Benriach. Sadly, his timing could not have been worse.

The Pattison crash of 1899, coupled with a downturn in the domestic market, saw a huge number of distilleries (many of which had only just opened) close down. Benriach was once of those, only running for two years before languishing in silence for the next 65, during which its large malting facility was used to supply Longmorn’s requirements.

The upturn in whisky’s fortunes in the 1960s saw Benriach run from 1965 onwards. A single malt was bottled in 1995 as part of then owner Seagram’s version of UDV’s Classic Malts, but volumes were limited and its reputation was not particularly high. As a result, most malt whisky drinkers dismissed it.

When Pernod Ricard took over Seagram’s whisky division in 2001 Benriach was closed once again, but bought in 2003 by Billy Walker, the former production director of Burn Stewart, and two South African entrepreneurs (an ironic echo of Duff’s attempts to establish whisky production in that country in the late 19th century). The BenRiach Distilling Co. now owns Benriach itself, Glendronach (where, incidentally, John Duff was once manager) and Glenglassaugh.

As a former blender, Billy Walker had insight into the true quality of Benriach. A selective series of bottlings, mixing old (from Seagram days), very young (from their ownership) and peated (from both) proved an eye-opener to malt drinkers. It has rapidly become a strong performer on the global market. Today it is back in full production and in 2013 the floor maltings reopened.

The distillery was picked up by Brown-Forman, one of the largest US wine and spirits producers, in 2016 along with the Louisville-based company’s acquisition of the entire BenRiach Company.

1897
Benriach founded by John Duff & Co
1899
The distillery is closed after just two years, although its maltings is still used to supply Longmorn
1965
Benriach is reopened by new owner The Glenlivet Distillers
1978
Seagram takes over the operation of the distillery
1983
Seagram begins production runs of peated Benriach
1994
Benriach becomes a brand of its own with a 10-year-old bottling
1998
Benriach’s maltings is mothballed, and four years later the distillery itself befalls the same fate
2003
Intra Trading, along with former burn Stewart director, Billy Walker, acquires Benriach and recommences production
2008
The Benriach Company acquires Glendronach distillery
2013
Benriach’s floor maltings is reopened; meanwhile, the company buys Glenglassaugh distillery
2016
US drinks producer Brown-Forman acquires Benriach along with the entire BenRiach Distillery Company

CAPACITY (MLPA) i
2
CONDENSER TYPE i
Traditional column condenser
FERMENTATION TIME i
48-50hrs
GRIST WEIGHT (T) i
5.8
HEAT SOURCE i
Internal copper stills
MALT SPECIFICATION i
Optic and Concerto. Less than 2ppm
MALT SUPPLIER i
Port Gordon Maltings
MASH TUN MATERIAL i
Stainless Steel
MASH TUN TYPE i
Traditional with conventional drainage system.
NEW-MAKE STRENGTH i
68%
SINGLE MALT PERCENTAGE i
20%
SPIRIT STILL CHARGE (L) i
9,800
SPIRIT STILL SHAPE i
Traditional onion shaped copper pot stills without boiling reflux bubble
SPIRIT STILL SIZE (L) i
14,000
STILLS i
4 (2 wash and 2 spirit)
WAREHOUSING i
5 on-site traditional, low roofed, earthen floored, stone-walled dunnage warehouses
WASH STILL CHARGE (L) i
15,000
WASH STILL SHAPE i
Traditional onion (ogee) shaped copper pot stills without boiling reflux bubble.
WASH STILL SIZE (L) i
19,000
WASHBACK SIZE (L) i
30,000
WASHBACK TYPE i
Stainless steel
WASHBACKS i
8
WATER SOURCE i
The Burnside Springs
WORT CLARITY i
Bright
YEAST TYPE i
Mauri liquid yeast
OWNERS

Brown-Forman
2016 - present
CURRENT OWNER

The BenRiach Distillery Company
2003 - present
PREVIOUS OWNERS

Chivas Brothers Holdings
2001 - 2003
Seagram Distillers
1978 - 2001
Glenlivet Distilleries
1965 - 1978
Longmorn Distillery Co
1900 - 1965
John Duff
1897 - 1900

RACHEL BARRIE, BENRIACH
26 September 2017
During a 26-year career in whisky, master blender Rachel Barrie has honed her skills at Glenmorangie, Ardbeg and Bowmore. Earlier this year, she moved to The BenRiach Distillery Company, with the task of bringing three ‘underdog’ distilleries – BenRiach, Glenglassaugh and Glendronach – to wider acclaim. She spoke to Giles Milton about the influences of science and nature on her whisky-making.

Rachel Barrie BenRiach Distillery
Rachel Barrie: The BenRiach whisky maker estimates she has tasted 150,000 casks
‘To start with, my relationship with whisky was about learning. My first distillery job was in 1995 with a big brand in Glenmorangie and that was about refining my knowledge. When I started working with Ardbeg in 1997, it was the start of something else. It gave me a taste of an underdog distillery and how you could bring it to life. That was really exciting and what most tuned me into what I’m doing now.

‘After studying chemistry at university, I got my start in whisky at the Scotch Whisky Research Institute, where I was given the job by Dr Jim Swan. Jim sadly passed away earlier this year, but I have such fond memories of him. When we first met, he was this eccentric boffin who knew everything about wood. I was just in awe of him. He had a great sense of intuition and an extraordinary mind. I describe him as the Einstein of whisky. Albert Einstein was renowned for his ability to look deep into nature and understand everything better. Jim was the instigator and brought that out in me.

‘With Jim, I learned about how things work but also learned to work with nature – to think it and feel it. His ability to see the future was special and he had great vision. He could be like a bird flying in the sky, taking a view of the bigger picture – to see it, feel it, breathe it in… and then dive deep down into the detail and really unlock every little element. He had it all. Entrepreneurial spirit, great imagination and scientific knowhow.

‘I would say my work is more art than science these days. Science is understanding nature; science is the theory. It is the start of your education, where you try to understand what’s happening. I’ve tasted 150,000 casks, and once you have that understanding and that programming in your brain, it becomes intuitive.

‘It is like learning music. You learn the rudiments first and then you are able to express yourself. Once you’ve learned everything, you know what’s going to work. A master blender is like a conductor; working with different casks, playing different tunes, different top notes, bass notes and working out how to bring them together. Some are playing their own tune in a single cask and some work better being brought together in an expression.

‘Now I want to apply that as whisky maker for BenRiach, Glenglassaugh and Glendronach. They are revered by some, but many people haven’t heard of them. To be able to have an influence, bring these distilleries to life and share them with the world is a wonderful opportunity and challenge.



BenRiach distillery: Jack Daniel’s owner Brown-Forman bought the Speyside site in 2016

‘My first six months have all been about nosing, tasting, appreciating and looking at everything from new make spirit to 50-year-old whiskies. I try to sense how things change in different casks and what different tunes they are playing. For example, what’s amazed me about Glenglassaugh is that it is playing a beautiful tone off the still – so mellow, like a woodwind section. It’s got top notes like the flute and oily bass notes that carry it through.

‘Glenglassaugh has the best design of warehouse because the air doesn’t change very often. It is quite a temperate environment and best for a mellow maturation. With the taller warehouses, you can find the casks at the top can get a bit spicy because they get more extremes in temperature. There are no extreme forces at Glenglassaugh; just slow and steady, mellow maturation. This is how you want to spend your life. A nice even pace.

‘In your first distillery, you learn as you go along. Like having your first child, you don’t have a clue what you’re doing. Some of what you learn you apply to the second child, and more you apply to the third. I’ve had three children and by the time you’re on your third, you’ve pretty much mastered it. You know when to tighten the reins and when to let go, when a cask needs extra nurturing and when to leave it alone and let it do its own thing.

‘As you get older it is about being yourself, getting to know everyone at a distillery and staying true to yourself. It is about sharing your knowledge and awareness, and enabling other people to see things from a different perspective that maybe they haven’t done before. Working at Brown-Forman [the Kentucky-based owner of The BenRiach Distillery Co] is a great environment. I knew that as soon as I walked through the door.



Glenglassaugh revival: Barrie describes the Portsoy distillery’s whisky as a ‘woodwind section’

‘Traditionally, it has been an industry where you keep your knowledge to yourself and protect your job – but it is not like that here. You need to be collaborative, so even if you have an idea, you have to remember to take everyone else along with you. It is about getting everyone to buy into what you are doing and have a passion for it. Everyone needs to be heard, listened to and motivated.

‘The aim is to take a distillery and make it the pinnacle, revered around the world. Master blenders and master distillers, we are all guardians of quality, continuing the legacy and tradition and protecting whisky for the future.

‘While there is the human element to whisky, what we make today is down to Mother Nature. Nature is much bigger than all of us. A whisky is like a person. You are affected by where you live, where you come from, the cultures you pick up, the environment, the nature of anything. Whisky is the same. How it ends up is down to its environment and how it adapts.

‘Scotch has stood the test of time. It is considered one of the finest spirits in the world and that is down to the Scottish environment. You cannot transport that to America, Sweden or anywhere else. The temperature, the water and barley quality, everything that has come to be. It is unique to Scotland.’

BROWN-FORMAN’S BENRIACH BUY

Jack Daniel’s owner Brown-Forman has spent £285m to buy the BenRiach, GlenDronach and Glenglassaugh single malts. But has the US spirits giant overpaid for the privilege?

BenRiach emblem
Trade secrets: There has been much speculation around the sums involved in the BenRiach deal
‘Clearly people want to be in this industry, though the opportunities are limited. The price of entry to the industry is also very high now.’

That’s Billy Walker, speaking to The Scotsman two years ago. Following the £285m paid by Brown-Forman to acquire The BenRiach Distillery Company – the business of which he is managing director – those words seem remarkably prophetic.

The deal for the BenRiach, GlenDronach and Glenglassaugh distilleries, announced last week, is already being described in some quarters as ‘a Billy Walker deal’ – in other words, one negotiated by a person with the happy knack of buying something at a knock-down price – then selling it on at a considerable profit.

Just how big is that profit? Some reports have suggested that the Walker family will net up to £95m from the deal – never mind the sums collected by Walker’s fellow investors, South Africans Geoff Bell and Wayne Kieswetter.

Given that the company paid Chivas Brothers £5m for BenRiach back in 2003, and bought Glenglassaugh in 2013, five years after it too had changed hands for £5m… Sure, the deal also includes GlenDronach, a bottling plant in Newbridge and the company’s Edinburgh headquarters but, from a seller’s point of view, the maths look rather attractive.

Indeed, some of those attending the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival over the past few days were quick to suggest that Brown-Forman had paid £100m over the odds for the company. But are they right?

Brown-Forman has worked in Scotch before. My first contact with the company, more than 15 years ago, came at the annual TFWA duty free trade fair held in Cannes, when it was marketing Glenmorangie alongside Jack Daniel’s, Southern Comfort and Woodford Reserve.

That association – selling Glenmo in various markets, including North America and travel retail – ceased when Moët Hennessy bought the Glenmorangie business in 2005 (by the way, the French company only paid £15m more – £300m – for a company that included Glenmorangie, a revived Ardbeg and Glen Moray, and they were accused of overspending at the time).

BenRiach casks

Spreading the risk: Is the BenRiach deal part of a diversification strategy?

Anyway, these guys know what they’re doing when it comes to brown spirits, with Jack Daniel’s an unparalleled masterclass in 21st-century brand-building. They’ve exited what they thought were the less attractive strands of the business – selling Southern Comfort and Tuaca to rival US spirits business Sazerac for $542.4m in March this year – and decided that the best way to surf the whisky revival is to diversify.

First it was Irish whiskey – the company announced its acquisition of Slane Castle Irish Whiskey Ltd, alongside a $50m investment in a new distillery, in June last year – and now it’s Scotch.

This move into ‘rival’ whisky segments, at a time when American whiskey is flying at home and overseas, works in a couple of ways, using the receipts of Jack’s success (and of the Sazerac divestments) to move into two equally buoyant spirits areas: Irish whiskey, currently the fastest-growing spirits category on the planet, and single malt Scotch, whose ascent (particularly in the US) is being constrained by supply, rather than demand.

In this way, the deal also constitutes a spreading of risk; if the American revival stutters (and it is, at least partly, driven by flavour innovations such as Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, which are already showing signs of losing momentum), then a presence in the Irish and Scotch single malt segments might help to counteract that slowdown.

Consider another emerging deal, announced in the past 24 hours and involving Southern Comfort’s new owner, Sazerac: the company has entered into exclusive negotiations to buy the Paddy blended Irish whiskey brand from Pernod Ricard-owned Irish Distillers. Another American spirits company moving into a fast-moving, overseas whisky category? Is this an emerging pattern?

Whether symptomatic of a nascent trend or not, the Brown-Forman/BenRiach acquisition – and its price-tag – has been driven by two overriding factors: the perceived potential of relatively under-exploited single malt brands; and the scarcity of businesses of this type and scale that are for sale – the ‘price of entry’ mentioned by Billy Walker in his Scotsman interview.

For those reasons, whatever the tittle-tattle and sharp intakes of breath at the sums involved, you suspect that both parties are more than happy with the deal.
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