Ardmore is one of the most traditional distilleries in Scotland. It is one of few to have its own cooperage and was one of the last to use coal furnaces to heat their stills. The stills therefore have thicker bases to stop the contents burning.
Ardmore Distillery Company
tel - +44(0)1464 831 213
web - www.ardmorewhisky.com
Tours through Ardmore Distillery are not currently available.
Ardmore is a Highland distillery near Aberdeen. It is currently owned by Jim Beam Global and is a large distillery, with 95% of the 5 million litres of whisky produced there each year going to their flagship blend, Teacher's Highland Cream. Teacher’s is one of the biggest selling blended whiskies in the UK. Ardmore currently release only one single malt whisky named ‘Traditional Cask’, which unusually for a Highland whisky is quite smoky. Peatiness was a common characteristic in Highland whisky during Victorian times but has now died out. Other Highland and Speyside distilleries occasionally release limited edition smoky whiskies, but the peating level of Ardmore is consistently around 15ppm (phenols per million). While this makes the final spirit smokier than most other Highland or Speyside whiskies, it is rather less than many whiskies from Islay or the other islands which have peating levels between 25-55ppm. They also mature their whisky in smaller casks, giving more contact with the wood and this process lends the name to the single malt. Other bottlings are few and far between, mostly coming from independent bottling companies.
The Ardmore distillery was founded by Adam Teacher in 1898. His family were well established in the whisky blending industry and decided to open their own distillery to help with meeting demand. This was to be William Teacher & Sons first distillery but Adam, who was William’s son, died before construction was completed. The site in rural Aberdeenshire, near the village of Kennethmont, was selected for its good rail and road links. It was also close to the fertile barley growing areas of the Highlands and good supplies of water and peat. The distillery was renovated and expanded in the 1950s and then the 1970s and now has eight large stills and is one of the largest distilleries in Scotland. In 1976, the Teacher family sold Ardmore to Allied Breweries, who were later to become part of the multi national company Allied Domecq. Jim Beam Global, the huge drinks giant, became the new owners in 2005, when they took over 20 wine and spirits brands from Allied Domecq. They continue to produce whisky for the Teacher’s Highland Cream blend but decided to release a single malt from Ardmore for the first time in its history. This was branded as ‘Traditonal Cask’ and has led to a new website and visitor centre, as they look to grow the name in the worldwide whisky market.