Food and Drink Showcase: The Malt Whisky Trail

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What is it?

The Malt Whisky Trail links nine iconic whisky locations in Moray Speyside, Scotland, an area with the largest concentration of whisky distilleries in the world. In the picturesque countryside around the River Spey you will find many of the world’s most famous brands of single malt Scotch whisky but also the UK’s only cooperage, amazing whisky-bars and stunning scenery.

As well as offering a fascinating glimpse into the history of Scotch, the region has golden beaches, deep pine forests, abundant wildlife and snow-capped hills.

Why go there?

The Malt Whisky Trail ranges from boutique to global brands and visitors will meet the craftspeople who are the guardians of more than 250 years of knowledge about the Scotch industry, from its early days of illegal stills nestled high in the hills, to the early pioneers of legal distilling who took a gamble and sold  their fine whiskies all over the world.

During tours of distilleries you will nose whisky straight from the cask, feel the heat of the copper stills and soak in the atmosphere of the many bonded warehouses. There is plenty to do for both whisky lovers and those who want to see an unspoiled corner of Scotland.

How to get there

This region is served by Inverness and Aberdeen airports, and is most easily explored by car or guided tour.

Inverness is just a 90 minute flight from London’s airports and there are daily flights from Gatwick and Heathrow, and it is also easy to travel to Inverness by train, either on the East Coast mainline operated by Virgin Trains East Coast or by ScotRail. For those wishing to travel overnight, the Caledonian Sleeper is a great way to travel from London Euston, and wake up refreshed in Scotland. There is plenty of accommodation in Inverness and the surrounding areas.

Elgin, an ideal base from which to explore Moray Speyside can be reached by train from Inverness (45 minutes) or from Aberdeen (1 hour 30 minutes), and Loch Ness is just half an hour from Inverness.

The Malt Whisky Trail Locations:

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Benromach Distillery

Established in 1898, Benromach distillery is independently owned by a family with proud, enduring roots in Speyside. After being mothballed, Gordon and MacPhail brought the distillery back to life 20 years ago.

At Benromach their Single Malt Scotch Whisky is handcrafted and made slowly, the time-honoured way.  Using the finest natural ingredients 3 distillers orchestrate every second of the distillation process by sight, sound, touch and smell.

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Dallas Dhu Distillery

Dallas Dhu Distillery

The historic Dallas Dhu distillery may not produce whisky anymore, but the site remains a fascinating place to learn about the history of Scotch malt whisky.

Step back in time to see how whisky was made in the 1900s. Get up close to the old machinery and processes which helped make Speyside whisky a global brand, and sample a dram for yourself.

The picturesque distillery, which is run by Historic Environment Scotland, offers audio-guided tours.

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Glen Moray Distillery

Glen Moray Distillery

A small, friendly and informal distillery distilling since 1897, Glen Moray is in the heart of Elgin, the historic capital of Speyside.

At the Glen Moray distillery, discover the reality of malt whisky distilling with our knowledgeable guides taking you through the processes and helping you discover our range of single malt whiskies.

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Glen Grant Distillery

Glen Grant Distillery

Enjoy a wonderful and memorable day out at Glen Grant, tour the distillery and Victorian Woodland Garden, enjoy a coffee with local homebakes in the Coffee Shop (April-October), and for those too young to tour the distillery, take part in the animal trail.

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Strathisla Distillery

Strathisla Distillery

Strathisla Distillery was built in 1786 on the banks of the river Isla, making it the oldest continually operating distillery on the Malt Whisky Trail. Today, Strathisla is one of the oldest continuously operating on the Malt Whisky Trail, and is also considered to be one of the most picturesque distilleries in Scotland.

Whisky enthusiasts and newcomers alike will delight in Strathisla tours – which are a sensory experience, both memorable and informative – created in a beautiful riverside distillery now in its two hundred and thirty second year of Scottish Highlands’ history.

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Glenfiddich Distillery

Glenfiddich Distillery

The name is Scots Gaelic for ‘Valley of the Deer’. The distillery was founded in 1886 by William Grant who built it by hand with his 9 children and a stonemason. It is now home to the world’s most awarded single malt.

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Speyside Cooperage

Speyside Cooperage

In the heart of Speyside Malt Whisky Trail lies the Speyside Cooperage, the only working cooperage in the UK where your clients can experience the ancient art of coopering.

The Speyside Cooperage is at the epicentre of the whisky industry’s cask manufacturing and management. The centre received casks from all around the world, which in turn make their way to distilleries across Scotland. Each year they make and repair over 100,000 casks – barrels, hogsheads, butts and puncheons.

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Cardhu Distillery

Cardhu Distillery

Cardhu Distillery nestles in a picturesque setting in the heart of Speyside. The only distillery started by a women, Cardhu really does stand out with its unique history, and the product it makes. The light character of the 12yr old Cardhu is an excellent starting point for anyone starting on their whisky journey and the new additions to the family the Cardhu 15 and 18yr offer flavours for those for that are looking for something a little more complex.

Cardhu is also home to the world-famous Johnnie Walker blend, and visitors to the distillery can experience both the history of the single malt, and the story of the renowned blend. Cardhu distillery offers guided tours, tutored tastings, and features an extensive shop and brand centre. Let Cardhu give you a warm Speyside welcome.

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The Glenlivet Distillery

The Glenlivet Distillery

The Glenlivet Distillery sits in a wild and remote glen, its history laced with drama and intrigue. So in every bottle of whisky we make, we capture as much of the spirit of the glen as we can.

Today, The Glenlivet is enjoyed the world over, and is one of Scotland’s best-selling whisky brands. Each year the picturesque distillery welcomes visitors from all over the world, who come to discover the secret of George Smith’s famous craft.

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