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Malt: Organic barley from 10 different farms

Water soirce: Local spring

Mashing:1 - tone mash, with both clear and cloudy worts produced  depending on the recipe

Fermentation: Four washbacks charged with 5000 litres of wort and fermented for 65 - 70 hours minimum

Experimentation with a variety of yearsts, with wort charity and yeast varied depending on the desired spirit profile

Distillation:  One pair of lantern - shaped stills by Speyside Copperworks. Wash still charge of  5000 litres yielding

roughly 1600 litres of low wines. Spirit still charged with 3000 litres yielding roughly 450 litres of spirit at 72.9 ABV.

Cut points are varied depending on the disired spirit "recipe". Five day operation. Balanced system.

Capacity: Around 100.000 lpa per annum.


NCN'EAN Ncn'ean

DISTILLERY
One of the new wave of Scottish farm distilleries designed by the late Jim Swan, which is set up to produce a light, fruity and organic single malt spirit.

NCN'EAN DISTILLERY
HIGHLAND SINGLE MALT SCOTCH WHISKY
Ncn’ean (pronounced Nook-knee-anne), is an abbreviation of Neachneohain, the name of a witch-queen in Scots Gaelic folklore who, according to Sir Walter Scott, ‘rode on the storm and marshalled the rambling host of wanderers under her grim banner’. Much like its namesake, Ncn’ean distillery on Scotland’s Morvern peninsula, is very much a leader in its protection of its natural environment, and intentions to operate at the forefront of innovation.

Ncn’ean has been designed as the first fully organic modern distillery in Scotland powered by 100% renewable energy. Wood chips for the biomass boiler are sourced from a local forest, while all by-products are recycled as animal and plant feed on the remote estate on which it lies.

The farm distillery was designed by the late distilling consultant Jim Swan to produce a light, fruity and estery spirit, a character intensified by slow mashes, long fermentations, horizontal lyne arms and shell and tube condensers, with a high, narrow spirit cut.

Experimentation comes in the form of varying yeast strains not usually adopted by distillers, while the wood programme will be focused predominantly on ex-Bourbon and red wine cask maturation, with a small Sherry influence. Two dunnage warehouses, located on the hill behind the distillery, feature temperature regulators to allow Ncn’ean greater control over the flavour generated in cask over time.  


NCN'EAN HISTORY
The idea to build a distillery on the grounds of the historic Drimnin Estate came to the Lewis family in 2012, some 10 years after they bought and set about restoring the neglected property. The estate itself had once been Maclean clan territory, and formed part of the Drimnin Castle grounds, but was sold by a bankrupt Charles Maclean in the late 18th century. Following a succession of owners and misfortunes – Drimnin House itself burned down in 1849, its owners meeting unrelated yet tragic and untimely deaths – the estate was rebuilt and eventually restored into holiday lets, a cattle farm and conservation area.

By 2013 the Lewis family’s plans to build a distillery in the historic farm buildings adjacent to Drimnin House were well underway, with daughter Annabel Thomas leaving a job in London to manage the project personally as CEO of the newly established Drimnin Distillery Ltd. Following two investment rounds, which included a government grant, the project was finally completed in March 2017.

While Drimnin distillery became the working title for the project, the family and its private investors were keen to separate the business from the rest of the estate. At the start of 2017 the new name Ncn’ean was chosen – Drimnin Distillery Ltd will soon also be renamed Ncn’ean Distillery Ltd – and on 21 March the first spirit was filled into cask. The distillery officially opened to visitors in July.

The first whisky to be released by Ncn’ean distillery is expected in 2020, although a limited number of individual casks are made available to purchase annually.

NCN'EAN FACTS
CAPACITY (MLPA) i
0.96
CONDENSER TYPE i
Multi-pass shell and tube
FERMENTATION TIME i
66-114 hours
FILLING STRENGTH i
63.3%
GRIST WEIGHT (T) i
1
HEAT SOURCE i
Steam from a biomass boiler
MALT SPECIFICATION i
Organic, Scottish, unpeated
MALT SUPPLIER i
Muntons from five organic farms
MASH TUN TYPE i
Semi-lauter
NEW-MAKE STRENGTH i
71-72%
SINGLE MALT PERCENTAGE i
100%
SPIRIT STILL SHAPE i
Lantern
SPIRIT STILL SIZE (L) i
3,500
STILLS i
2
WAREHOUSING i
Dunnage on site
WASH STILL SHAPE i
Lantern
WASH STILL SIZE (L) i
5,000
WASHBACK CHARGE (L) i
5,000
WASHBACK SIZE (L) i
6,650
WASHBACK TYPE i
Stainless steel
WASHBACKS i
4
WATER SOURCE i
Local spring
WORT CLARITY i
High clarity
YEAST TYPE i
Varies, includes Fermentis and Anchor distillers yeast
OWNER
Drimnin Distillery Company logo
CURRENT OWNER
Drimnin Distillery Company

Drimnin Distillery Company
Company founded to oversee the build and operation of Ncn’ean distillery in Oban.

DRIMNIN DISTILLERY COMPANY PROFILE
Drimnin Distillery Ltd was established by the Lewis family, owners of Drimnin Estate on the Morvern peninsula near Oban, to build and operate a new farm distillery on the historic grounds. From the start the company was to be run as a separate entity to the estate’s existing businesses, which include holiday lets and cattle farming, and is set to be renamed Ncn’ean Distillery Ltd to avoid confusion.

The company itself is run by CEO Annabel Thomas, daughter of Derek and Louise Lewis who run the estate, and managing director Benet Slay.

While the idea to build a distillery on the Drimnin Estate overlooking the Sound of Mull was first conceived in 2010, the plan seriously gained its legs in 2013 with the establishment of Drimnin Distillery Ltd.

Founded by Derek and Louise Lewis, owners of Drimnin Estate, along with their daughter, Annabel Thomas, Drimnin Distillery Ltd quickly went about seeking funding from both investors and government grants.

In 2014 former Carlsberg UK boss Benet Slay joined the company as chairman and construction of the distillery in one of the estate’s former farm buildings eventually got underway in April 2016.

The distillery name was changed to Ncn’ean at the start of 2017 ahead of its opening in March, to avoid confusion with the estate’s other businesses. Named after a witch-queen in Scots Gaelic folklore, a fierce hunter and protector of nature, the distillery is the first producer of solely organic malt spirit in Scotland, operating with an emphasis on environmentally-friendly practices.

The company name is due to be changed to Ncn’ean Distillery Ltd in due course
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