Loch Lomond whiskies are among the finest examples of Scottish craftsmanship. With a rich history dating back to the early 1800s, the Loch Lomond Distillery has been producing single malt whiskies that are beloved by connoisseurs around the world. In this article, we’ll explore the unique production process behind Loch Lomond whiskies, the different types of whiskies available, and where you can taste and purchase them. Whether you’re a seasoned whisky aficionado or new to the world of Scottish single malts, there’s something for everyone to discover in the world of Loch Lomond whiskies.
The Founding of Loch Lomond Distillery
Loch Lomond Distillery is a renowned distillery located in Alexandria, Scotland. The distillery was founded in 1965 by Duncan Thomas, an American businessman who saw an opportunity in the picturesque banks of Loch Lomond. The location of the distillery was an essential factor in its success.
Initially, Loch Lomond Distillery produced only malt whisky, but in 1971, they started producing grain whisky, which is used in the production of blended whiskies. In 1984, the distillery became the first in Scotland to produce both malt and grain whisky under one roof. This innovative approach allowed the distillery to experiment with new techniques and create an extensive range of whiskies.
The distillery was built on the site of an old dye works, and its rich history is reflected in the unique techniques used in the production process. Today, Loch Lomond Group is a family-owned company that owns the distillery. Over the years, the distillery has won numerous prestigious awards, including the “Best Single Malt Scotch Whisky” at the 2017 World Whiskies Awards.
The production process of Loch Lomond whiskies is unique and intricate, involving a variety of steps and a diverse set of ingredients. The process begins with malting, where barley is soaked in water to start the germination process. After a few days, it is dried and turned into malted barley, which is then ground and mixed with water to create a mash.
The mash is then heated in a mash tun to extract the sugars, resulting in a sweet liquid called wort. The wort is then transferred to large washbacks, where yeast is added, and the mixture is left to ferment for two to three days. This fermentation process is what produces the alcohol content of around 7-8%.
The next step is distillation, where the fermented liquid is heated to produce alcohol vapors. These vapors are then condensed and collected in a copper pot still called a spirit still. The resulting liquid, known as “new make spirit,” is transferred to oak casks for maturation.
Loch Lomond uses a variety of stills in its production process, including pot stills, column stills, and a unique hybrid still called a “Lomond still.” The Lomond still has adjustable plates, allowing distillers to modify the flavor and character of the whisky.
Loch Lomond Distillery is known for its innovative approach to whisky production, using a variety of grains and yeast strains to create distinctive flavor profiles. The distillery also experiments with different types of casks, including bourbon, sherry, and wine casks, to age its whiskies and add complexity to the final product.
Overall, the production process of Loch Lomond whiskies is a fine balance of tradition and innovation, resulting in high-quality, unique, and flavorful whiskies that are enjoyed by whisky enthusiasts around the world.
Types of Loch Lomond Whiskies
Loch Lomond Distillery produces a wide variety of whiskies, each with its own unique characteristics and flavor profile. Let’s take a closer look at some of the most popular types:
Loch Lomond Original
This flagship whisky of the distillery is a blend of malt and grain whiskies. It boasts a light, fruity flavor with notes of vanilla and caramel.
Loch Lomond 12 Year Old
Aged for 12 years in oak casks, this single malt whisky has a rich, complex flavor with notes of honey, oak, and spice. It is perfect for those who enjoy a more robust whisky.
Loch Lomond 18 Year Old
This single malt whisky is aged for 18 years in oak casks, resulting in a deep, rich flavor with notes of dried fruit, chocolate, and smoke. It is a premium whisky that is perfect for special occasions.
Loch Lomond Inchmurrin
Named after one of the islands on Loch Lomond, this single malt whisky has a light, floral flavor with notes of citrus and vanilla. It is perfect for those who prefer a lighter whisky.
Loch Lomond Craiglodge
Aged for 10 years in oak casks, this single malt whisky has a smoky, peaty flavor with notes of dark chocolate and espresso. It is perfect for those who enjoy a more intense, full-bodied whisky.
Whether you prefer a light and fruity whisky or a more robust and full-bodied one, Loch Lomond Distillery has a whisky that will suit your taste.
Whisky Tours and Tastings in the Loch Lomond Area
For whisky lovers, a visit to the Loch Lomond area is not complete without experiencing the various whisky tours and tastings available in the region. Here are some options to consider:
Loch Lomond Distillery Tour
A visit to the Loch Lomond Distillery itself is a must-do for any whisky enthusiast. The distillery tour gives visitors a behind-the-scenes look at the production process, including the unique methods and ingredients used by the distillery. Visitors can see the different types of stills used in the production process and learn how they impact the final product. The tour concludes with a tasting of a variety of Loch Lomond whiskies, allowing visitors to experience the range of unique flavors and characteristics that make these whiskies so special.
Whisky Tasting at the Drovers Inn
Located near Loch Lomond, the historic Drovers Inn offers a variety of whisky tastings, including a special Loch Lomond tasting that features a selection of the distillery’s best whiskies. This intimate setting allows visitors to savor and appreciate the flavors and aromas of the whiskies while learning about their unique characteristics and history.
Whisky Tour at Glengoyne Distillery
Just a short drive from Loch Lomond is the Glengoyne Distillery, which offers tours that provide an overview of the whisky-making process. Visitors can learn about the history of the distillery and the unique methods used to create their distinct flavor profile. The tour concludes with a tasting of a variety of Glengoyne whiskies, providing visitors with the opportunity to compare and contrast the flavors and characteristics of different whiskies.
Whether you’re a seasoned whisky connoisseur or a novice looking to learn more about this Scottish tradition, the whisky tours and tastings in the Loch Lomond area offer something for everyone.
Loch Lomond Whiskies: A Sustainable Choice
Are you looking for a whisky brand that aligns with your values of sustainability and environmental responsibility? Look no further than Loch Lomond Whiskies. The Loch Lomond Group is dedicated to reducing its environmental impact and has implemented several initiatives to achieve that goal.
Using Recycled Materials
Loch Lomond Group uses recycled materials in its packaging, including recycled glass and cardboard, to reduce waste and minimize the use of virgin materials. This effort has helped the company to reduce its carbon footprint and support a circular economy.
Reducing Water Usage
The distillery has implemented innovative water-saving measures to reduce its water usage, including rainwater harvesting and using recycled water for cooling. These efforts have helped the company to reduce its water consumption and environmental impact.
Using Renewable Energy
Loch Lomond Group is committed to sourcing renewable energy and reducing its carbon footprint. The company has installed solar panels at its distillery to generate renewable energy. This initiative has helped the company to reduce its dependence on non-renewable energy sources and support the transition to a more sustainable future.
By choosing Loch Lomond whiskies, you can feel good knowing that you are supporting a company that is committed to sustainability and reducing its environmental impact. Make a sustainable choice and enjoy the unique and flavorful Loch Lomond whiskies.
Insider Tips for Tasting Loch Lomond Whiskies
Tasting Loch Lomond whiskies is an art, and there are many ways to enhance your experience when trying them. Here are some insider tips to help you get the most out of your tasting:
Use the Right Glass
A tulip-shaped glass is ideal for tasting whisky, as it allows the aroma to concentrate at the top, and the narrow opening helps to guide the aroma to your nose. Make sure to hold the glass by the stem to avoid warming the whisky with your hand.
Add a Splash of Water
Adding a few drops of water to your whisky can help to release the flavors and aromas. It can also help to reduce the alcohol burn, making it easier to taste the subtler flavors. Start by adding a small amount of water and experiment with the taste until you find the perfect balance.
Take Your Time
Sipping whisky slowly and taking the time to savor each sip can help you appreciate the complexity of the flavors and aromas. Take note of the different layers of flavor that you experience with each sip and let the whisky linger on your tongue for a few seconds before swallowing.
Experiment with Food Pairings
Trying different foods with your whisky can enhance the flavors and create new taste experiences. For example, pairing a smoky whisky with a piece of dark chocolate can create a delicious flavor combination. Other food pairings to consider include cheese, cured meats, and nuts. Experiment to find the perfect pairing for your taste buds.
Scotch Whisky Distilleries and Regions
Scotland is home to dozens of notable distilleries and regions that produce some of the world’s best whiskies. Here are some of the most popular:
Located off the west coast of Scotland, Islay is known for its peaty, smoky whiskies, which are produced by distilleries like Laphroaig and Lagavulin. These whiskies are typically made with malted barley that has been dried over peat fires, giving them their distinct smoky flavor.
Speyside is a region in the northeast of Scotland that is home to more than half of the country’s distilleries, including Glenlivet and Macallan. Speyside whiskies are known for their fruity, sweet flavors, which are often the result of aging in sherry casks.
The Highlands region covers a large area of Scotland and includes a wide variety of distilleries, each with its own unique style. Some of the most popular include Glenmorangie and Dalmore. Highland whiskies are known for their complexity, with flavors ranging from sweet and fruity to rich and smoky.
Located in the southern part of Scotland, the Lowlands region is known for producing lighter, more delicate whiskies. Distilleries like Auchentoshan and Glenkinchie are popular in this region. Lowland whiskies are often triple-distilled, which gives them their delicate flavor profile.
Whether you prefer a peaty Islay whisky or a sweet Speyside dram, Scotland has something to offer every whisky lover.
Where to Buy Loch Lomond Whiskies
If you’re looking to buy Loch Lomond whiskies, there are several options available. You can purchase them from local liquor stores and specialty shops. Additionally, online retailers like Master of Malt and The Whisky Exchange offer a wide variety of Loch Lomond whiskies. Depending on the type and age of the whisky, as well as the location you purchase it from, prices can vary.
It’s important to note that some Loch Lomond whiskies may be limited edition or rare, so you may need to do some research to find where they are available. Additionally, if you’re visiting the Loch Lomond area, you can purchase whiskies directly from the Loch Lomond Distillery.
When buying Loch Lomond whiskies, it’s always a good idea to check the label for details on the specific type of whisky, its age, and its flavor profile. This information can help you make an informed decision on which whiskies to purchase.
In conclusion, Loch Lomond whiskies stand out as a perfect example of the dedication and expertise that Scottish whisky makers bring to the table. With their unique production process and wide variety of types available, Loch Lomond whiskies offer something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re a seasoned whisky drinker or just getting started, we encourage you to explore the world of Loch Lomond whiskies and Scottish whisky as a whole.
If you’re planning to taste Loch Lomond whiskies, follow the insider tips on how to taste whisky like a pro, which include using a whisky glass, adding a splash of water, and taking your time to savour the flavours. Additionally, by supporting a sustainable company like Loch Lomond, you can actively contribute to a greener and more ethical industry.
Learning about the unique history and production process of Loch Lomond is also an excellent way to gain a deeper appreciation for this beloved Scottish tradition. From the founding of the distillery to the different types of stills used in the production process, there is so much to discover.
We hope that this article has inspired you to explore Loch Lomond whiskies further, perhaps by visiting the distillery or trying new types of whiskies. If you enjoyed this article, check out our other content on Scottish tourism and whisky production. Cheers!
As an avid traveler and Scotch whisky enthusiast, the author has spent years exploring the best distilleries and regions in Scotland. Their passion for the craft led them to pursue a degree in hospitality and tourism, specializing in Scottish tourism. During their studies, they conducted extensive research on the economic impact of the Scotch whisky industry on Scotland’s tourism industry, citing sources such as the Scottish Whisky Association and VisitScotland. Additionally, the author has completed several professional certifications in the field of whisky, including the Whisky Ambassador certification and the Scotch Whisky Experience tour guide certification. With this combination of academic and practical experience, the author is uniquely qualified to provide readers with an informative and engaging guide to Loch Lomond whiskies and Scottish whisky as a whole.