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Chivas completes construction of Dalmunach distillery
13 October, 2014

Chivas Brothers, the scotch whisky and premium gin business of Pernod Ricard, has completed the construction of its new Speyside malt whisky distillery.

The fourteenth operating Chivas Brothers' malt whisky distillery, Dalmunach, is named after the nearby pool in the River Spey on whose banks the distillery sits and is capable of producing up to 10 million litres per year.

Laurent Lacassagne, chairman and CEO of Chivas Brothers, said: "As global demand for Scotch whisky increases year on year, our confidence in the long-term growth prospects for the category remains strong. The construction of the new Dalmunach distillery is a clear demonstration of our confidence and also of our commitment to invest to meet the significant growth potential.

"With their reputation for crafted excellence, our blended whiskies form a key part of the Chivas Brothers portfolio in both emerging economies and mature markets, so we believe the increased capacity which the new distillery will provide will help to drive the business forward in the years to come, " said Lacassagne.

The distillery architecture has been inspired by the shape of a sheaf of barley and houses eight copper pot stills. A tulip shape was used for the wash stills and an onion shape used for the spirit stills, replicating those from the Imperial distillery, which was situated on the site until 2012.
Production at the Dalmunach distillery will commence this month.
New Chivas Distillery opened by Nicola Sturgeon.

22 June, 2015

First minister Nicola Sturgeon will officially open Chivas Brothers' £25m Dalmunach Distillery on the banks of the River Spey today.

The distillery - named after the nearby pool in the River Spey - is the culmination of Chivas Brothers' investment package which has increased malt whisky distillation capacity by 17% to "support long-term global demand for its brands".

Laurent Lacassagne, chairman and CEO of Chivas Brothers, said: "Dalmunach Distillery is an excellent example of securing the future of the industry by respecting its heritage and it's fitting that the remnants from the old Imperial Distillery have been built into an extremely efficient distillery with an architecturally stunning design."
The distillery houses eight copper pot stills with a tulip shape used for the wash stills and an onion shape for the spirit stills, replicating those from the Imperial distillery which was situated on the site until 2012.

First minister Nicola Sturgeon added: "Scotch Whisky is one of Scotland's iconic brands and is in huge demand all over the globe due to the exceptional quality the industry produces.
"It is hugely important to the Scottish economy and its protected EU status means it has an unmatched international reputation."

Thomas Mackenzie’s Imperial distillery made way for Chivas Brothers’ contemporary yet historically-sympathetic Dalmunach.

DALMUNACH DISTILLERY

SPEYSIDE SINGLE MALT SCOTCH WHISKY

Named for the nearby pool in the River Spey, Dalmunach is one of Scotland’s newest and most contemporary distilleries. Built by owner Pernod Ricard (Chivas Brothers) in 2014, the large yet environmentally sympathetic building occupies the former site of the Imperial Distillery which was demolished in 2013.


Thomas Mackenzie, a co-owner of Daluaine and Talisker, founded the Imperial Distillery in 1897 on the banks of the River Spey in Carron, Moray. A single malt distillery, almost all of Imperial’s liquid was siphoned off for blends such as Teacher’s, Ballantine’s and Old Smuggler.

During its 100-year lifetime, the distillery changed hands and waded through sporadic periods of inactivity several times, eventually falling into the lap of Pernod Ricard following its takeover of Allied Domecq in 2005. By this time the distillery was completely inactive.

By 2013 the Scotch whisky industry was experiencing a period of booming demand for both blends and single malts, prompting hoards of companies to invest in either expanding capacity at their existing distilleries or building a new site altogether. For Chivas Brothers, the whisky and gin arm of French drinks group Pernod Ricard, a new distillery with the capability of supplying single malt whisky for its leading blends Chivas Regal, Ballantine’s and Royal Salute, was a no-brainer. With Imperial laying silent and in need of a hefty – and costly – refurbishment, Chivas took the decision to demolish the site and build a new super distillery in its place.

The build of Dalmunach was overseen by former Chivas Brothers production director Douglas Cruickshank, who rather aptly began his career in whisky at the age of 15 at the Imperial Distillery. Keen to preserve some of the character of his first place of work, Cruickshank ensured several of Imperial’s key design features were inherited by Dalmunach. Aberdeen red brick from the original mill building has been recycled for the new site’s entranceway, while wood from the distillery’s original washbacks has been used to clad the walls of the new tun room. The building itself has even been designed to complement the surrounding landscape and traditional architectural style of the region.

Of course the innovative Pernod Ricard was keen to pimp up Dalmunach with the latest tech, which includes heat recovery technology, 16 stainless steel washbacks, and eight stills arranged untraditionally in a circle to 'provide a unique aesthetic for the future'.

1897
Thomas Mackenzie builds the Imperial Distillery in Carron, Moray
1989
The distillery is sold to Allied Distillers (later Allied Domecq)
1998
After more than 100 years and three previous bouts of being mothballed, Imperial is permanently closed
2005
Pernod Ricard acquires the site after its takeover of Allied Domecq
2013
The Imperial Distillery is completely demolished. Work begins on building the new Dalmunach Distillery in its place
2014
Dalmunach begins distillation of single malt whisky

CAPACITY (MLPA) i
10
CONDENSER TYPE i
Heat recovery of hot water fitted with thermo vapour compressors
FERMENTATION TIME i
54 hours
FILLING STRENGTH i
63.50%
GRIST WEIGHT (T) i
12
HEAT SOURCE i
High pressure steam
MALT SPECIFICATION i
Unpeated
MALT SUPPLIER i
Simpsons
MASH TUN TYPE i
Briggs full lauter
NEW-MAKE STRENGTH i
69%
SINGLE MALT PERCENTAGE i
0%
SPIRIT STILL CHARGE (L) i
20,000
SPIRIT STILL SHAPE i
Onion
SPIRIT STILL SIZE (L) i
30,000
STILLS i
4 wash; 4 spirit
WASH STILL CHARGE (L) i
30,000
WASH STILL SHAPE i
Tulip
WASH STILL SIZE (L) i
30,000
WASHBACK SIZE (L) i
59,000
WASHBACKS i
16
WATER SOURCE i
Balintomb water supply
WORT CLARITY i
<10 EBCs
YEAST TYPE i
Lallemand
OWNERS

Pernod Ricard
2014 - present
CURRENT OWNER

Chivas Brothers Holdings
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