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Whiskymag 137 July _Aug 2016

Clynelish (Brora) Single Malt Scotch Whisky Highland Distillery Information

Original Clynlish then called Brora and back to Clynelish was founded in 1819 by the Marquis of Stafford

The present Clynlish was built in 1968.

Location Highlands region, Northern District, Sutherland.

Water source Clynemilton Burn


Present Clynelish Single Malt Scotch Whisky Distillery Equipment

Copper domed mash tun

8 Oregon pine washbacks

6 large capacity pot stills

American bourbon casks.

Clynelish Distillery, Brora,



Tel: +44 (0)1408 621444


Visitor Centre Phone for details

+44 (0)1408 62300


Please confirm with the distillery before travelling

Clynelish Single Malt

Scotch Whisky

Distillery Style Tasting Notes

Nose: Very coastal, salt air and seaweed.


Palate: Medium bodied. Sweet malt, briny, spicy.


Finish: Long, spicy, slightly peppery finish.


Clynelish (Brora) Whisky Distillery History

Marquis of Stafford established the original Clynelish distillery in 1819, the distillery operated until 1968 when a new modern Distillery was built.


Most of the history to the Clynelish distillery belongs to the original distillery, which was renamed Brora, when the new Distillery was built alongside it and took over the Clynelish name.


The farm at Clynelish was leased to James Harper, originally from Midlothian, who started the distillery with one wash still and one spirit still, producing 10,015 gallons (45,527 litres) in 1821-22.


Andrew Ross succeeded James Harper as lessee in 1834. In 1846 the distillery passed to George Lawson, who made extensive improvements to the distillery, building a new malt kiln and replacing the original stills.


When the Leith whisky blenders, Ainslie & Co, bought over the distillery in 1896 they enlarged the distillery production and warehousing to satisfy the demand from wholesalers


The Pelton water wheel that had originally supplied power was supplemented by a horizontal steam engine; a system of screw and band conveyors moved raw materials throughout the buildings and a generator was added to provide electric light.


In 1912, John Risk, a trustee who already owned a 50% interest in Clynelish, bought the remaining 50% from Ainslie's & Co and in partnership with The Distillers Company Limited formed The Clynelish Distillery Co Ltd. In 1916 John Walker & Sons Ltd acquired a stake


John Risk sold his shares in the company in 1925 and in 1930 all the shares in Clynelish were transferred to Scottish Malt Distillers Ltd, now part of United Distillers


In March 1931 the economic recession forced Clynelish to close. Distilling returned in September 1938, only to shut down from May 1941 until November 1945 due to the restrictions on the supply of barley to distillers during the Second World War.


In the 1960's Clynelish was again brought up to date when mains electricity was installed and stills that had been heated by a hand-fired coal-burning furnace were converted to internal steam heating.


In 1968 the original Clynelish distillery was replaced by the new distillery built on an adjacent site.  The six stills in the new distillery are run on the most up to date lines, while retaining the traditional still and the original water supplies from the Clynemilton Burn. This ensured that the sought after quality of Clynelish whisky remained unchanged as an excellent character full malt that is highly rated by blenders. Today only 1% of the production is sold as single malt; the remaining 99% is used in Johnnie Walker Gold Label blend.


Clynelish Single Malt Scotch Whisky Distillery Bottlings 

Clynelish 14 Years Old Now Coastal Highland Malts

Clynelish 15 Years Old "Distillers Edition


Clynlish Single Malt Scotch Whisky Older Distillery Bottlings

14 Years Old (Flora and Fauna)  

Cask Strength

15 Years Old The Managers Choice

22 Years Old Rare Malts Selection 1972

23 Years Old Rare Malts Selection 1972

23 Years Old Rare Malts Selection 1974

24 Years Old Rare Malts Selection 1972


Clynelish Single Malt Scotch Whisky  Independent Bottlings 


A.D Rattery

Berrys' Own Selection,



Carn Mor


Connoisseurs Choice, Cask Strength, Private Collection (Gordon & MacPhail),

Coopers Choice,

Dun Bheagan


Duncan Taylor, (N2)

Golden Cask

Hart Brothers,

James MacArthur's

Kingsbury's (Japan Import System)


Mission (Murray McDavid),

Old Malt Cask. Platinum and Provenance (Douglas Laing),



Whisky Galore (Duncan Taylor.


Brora Single Malt Scotch Whisky Distillery Bottling

Aged 20 Years Rare Malts Selection 1974

Aged 20 Years Rare Malts Selection 1975

Aged 20 Years Rare Malts Selection 1982

Aged 21 Years Rare Malts Selection 1977

Aged 22 Years Rare Malts Selection 1972

Aged 24 Years Rare Malts Selection 1977

25 Year Old 7th Release

30 Year Old Releases 2006, 2007


Brora Single Malt Scotch Whisky Independent Bottlings 


Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon & MacPhail),

Duncan Taylor Collection

Old & Rare, Old Malt Cask, Platinum and Provenance (Douglas Laing),



Clynelish Brora Tasting Notes Clynelish Brora Tasting Notes BUY WHISKY NOW