THE SINGLETON OF:
The Singleton is actually a threesome of single malts each with a growing family of expressions around a core 12-year-old. First was Singleton of Glen Ord, Diageo’s ‘green grassy’ malt from the Black Isle which was reserved for Asia. Then came two Speysiders – The Singleton of Glendullan (fruity, grassy) for the US and Canada, and The Singleton of Dufftown (nutty, spicy), which was kept just for Europe. Today all three are available globally in a bid to become the world’s number one single malt brand.
In each case with The Singleton of Glendullan, Dufftown and Glen Ord, the range has been expanded with older expressions and those with no age statement at all. Examples include Dufftown’s Spey Cascade, Tailfire and Sunray, and Glendullan’s Master’s Art that is finished in Muscat casks.
Described as a ‘recruitment malt’, The Singleton has become the key driver in Diageo’s single malt portfolio, flanked by ‘discovery malts’ like Talisker and Oban, and ‘prestige malts’ like Mortlach and the annual Special Releases range.
For a giant with such prominent brands, Diageo is not used to playing catch-up to its smaller rivals, but that is what has happened with single malts.
With a view to redressing the balance, The Singleton range was launched in 2006, starting with Glen Ord, followed by Glendullan and Dufftown 12 months later. The brand’s success led to a major expansion at Glen Ord in 2014 that doubled capacity to 10 million LPA (litres of alcohol per annum).
In the same year, Diageo launched The Singleton of Dufftown Tailfire and Sunray – the first two NAS expressions in the brand’s portfolio.
By 2015 Diageo revealed plans to grow The Singleton as a single malt brand in its own right, to take on the might of The Glenlivet and Glenfiddich which jointly held the title of world’s biggest malt brand.
Singleton of Glen Ord Distillery reopens to visitors
The Inverness based distillery has a new brand home, which visitors can visit as it reopens to the public.
Published: July 6, 2022
The Singleton brand home is the latest to benefit from Diageo’s £185million pound investment in Scotch whisky tourism that will also see transformed visitor experiences at Talisker Distillery on Skye, and Caol Ila on Islay, which will open later this summer.
The investment programme aims to put Scotland at the forefront of global trends in food and drink tourism.
The Singleton is a rapidly growing single malt whisky brand, and the new distillery home offers an interactive destination for visitors from around the globe.
As well as showcasing The Singleton single malts, the brand home will promote local Scottish food produce perfect for pairing with the whisky.
Marking the official opening, Tony Singh, who created a delicious whisky paired dinner in celebration, said: “Scotland is rich with exceptional quality food and drink, and it is wonderful to see that being celebrated at the new home of The Singleton.
“Scotch whisky is the country’s leading export to the world and a magnet for international tourism.
"It is great for Scotland to see Scotch whisky brands like The Singleton making the connection between their delicious single malt and Scotland’s rich larder of local produce.”
Exclusively for the launch celebrations, the renowned Scottish chef created a menu which pairs perfectly with The Singleton of Glen Ord Celebratory bottling, a special edition liquid created to commemorate the opening.
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Singer songwriter Luke Lavolpe provided the soundtrack to the evening, fresh from his performance opening for Lewis Capaldi.
Keep an eye on The Singleton Facebook page for details on how to create the menu yourself at home.
The visitor experience has undergone a complete transformation as the region prepares to welcome thousands of tourists to the now legendary North Coast 500 route, the website for which has had one million visitors in the last year from those looking to plan a summer trip.
Ideally positioned as either a start or end point for those exploring the NC500, many visitors to which will be seeking out whisky and foodie experiences, the distillery is located in the beautifully picturesque Muir of Ord, a stone’s throw from the Highland capital of Inverness.
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The Singleton experience has something for all visitors, regardless of whisky knowledge or time available to spend, including:
A 90-minute distillery tour taking guests on a deep dive into The Singleton’s signature process.
Special “drivers packs” for designated drivers to take away and enjoy later
Luxurious bar, social and tasting spaces serving a host of drams, cocktails and much more.
A deli counter offering a selection of meat, veggie and vegan sharing platters created in partnership with local suppliers, which complement the drinks on offer.
A collection of desserts from neighbouring Bad Girl Bakery.
An expansive retail area packed with distillery exclusive items.
Barbara Smith, Managing Director of Diageo’s Scotland Brand Homes, said: “The Singleton is one of the most exciting single malt brands in the world and we are delighted to be opening the doors to the brand’s new home at Glen Ord Distillery.
“Our £185million investment in Scotch whisky tourism is designed to put Scotland at the forefront of the global trend in food and drink tourism by giving consumers a truly world-class experience at our distilleries.
"This just the start of an incredible summer of Scotch whisky investment, with Talisker and Caol Ila distillery’s also launching new visitor experiences, and we want to use that to build momentum in the recovery of Scottish tourism.”
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Fiona Richmond, Head of Regional Food at Scotland Food & Drink, is the project coordinator for the industry-led Food Tourism Scotland Action Plan which aims to unlock the growth potential of food and drink tourism.
She said: “Scotland is a world-leader in food and drink tourism and it’s fantastic to see Diageo and the whisky sector continuing to invest and innovate in visitor experiences.
"Every visitor to the country has to eat and drink, so providing unique and memorable experiences is invaluable in bolstering our international reputation as a land of food and drink.”
North Coast 500 Operations Director, Craig Mills added: “It is great to see investment of this scale being made in the Highlands and we are sure the brilliantly reimagined The Singleton brand home will become a fast favourite with locals and tourists alike.
“The location makes it a fantastic option to either start or end your NC500 journey on, and while passengers can enjoy their drams on site, the inclusion of drivers’ packs ensure samples can be savoured once safely parked up.”
The site is the fifth to open as part of the project. Glenkinchie, Clynelish and Cardhu distilleries have recently re-opened as part of the ambitious project which re-imagines the traditional whisky tour experience.
The centrepiece of the investment programme, the Johnnie Walker Princes Street global visitor attraction, opened in Edinburgh in September last year.
Building a modern visitor experience that is inclusive was also integral to the planning and Diageo worked closely with Euan’s Guide, a disabled access charity to make the Singleton brand home more accessible, including the only Changing Places toilet in a distillery brand home.
The home of The Singleton holds a Green Tourism Gold Award – the highest sustainability accolated for a visitor attraction.