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Glenglassaugh is a renowned Scotch whisky distillery, which contains a rich history dating back to 1875. James Moir, a local entrepreneur and his nephews Alexander and William Morrison established the Glenglassaugh Distillery in 1875. Located near the village of Portsoy in the Highlands, it benefitted from the nearby Glenglassaugh springs. They originally produced whisky primarily for blending purposes, and was highly regarded for its quality. It contributed to many popular blends of the time.

In the early 1900s, the distillery changed hands multiple times due to facing various operational challenges and in 1907, production stopped due to the economic downturns. The distillery remained closed for over five decades, during which time it fell into disrepair.

In 1960 the distillery was acquired and revived by Highland Distillers, who invested heavily in modernising the facilities and restarting production. The focus for the distillery remained on producing whisky for blends, however during this period a few single malts were also released.

Production was going well until 1986, when Glenglassaugh faced another closure due to changing market conditions and the oversupply of whisky in the industry. The doors were closed once again shortly after. The distillery remained inactive for over two decades, during which time its legacy was kept alive by a small group of enthusiasts and collectors who cherished its rare releases.

Glenglassaugh stayed silent until 2008 when the brand was acquired by a group of investors led by the Scaent Group, who significantly refurbished and modernised the distillery. They resumed production to huge fanfare, with the new spirit flowing from the stills for the first time in over 20 years.

In 2013, the distillery was acquired by BenRiach Distillery Company, which further invested in its future. In 2016, Glenglassaugh, as well as Benriach and Glendronach distilleries, was acquired by the American company Brown-Forman Corporation. Who are well known for its portfolio of high-quality spirits.

Under the new ownership, Glenglassaugh expanded its range, offering a variety of single malts that showcase the distillery’s coastal character and complex flavour profiles. The distillery has also released several innovative and limited-edition whiskies, including peated expressions and older age statements, gaining acclaim from whisky enthusiasts and critics alike. 

The future of Glenglassaugh looks stable for the first time in their history. It has cemented its place as a respected producer of Highland single malt whisky, known for its quality. The distillery is committed to sustainable practices and environmental stewardship, ensuring that its operations have a minimal impact on the surrounding landscape. 

Some of their most popular releases include:
Glenglassaugh Portsoy - A ‘richly peated’ whisky inspired by the neighbouring harbour village of the same name. Matured in Sherry, Bourbon and Port casks, the single malt carries notes of maritime, tropical fruit, Sherried dark soy, liquorice and sea kelp on the nose, alongside flavours of dark chocolate, fermented soy and charred mango, with treacle and sea salt.

Glenglassaugh 12 Year Old -  A harmonious balance of the signature coastal style; lush, tropical and coastal. Matured in a combination of bourbon, sherry and red wine casks to introduce ripe fruit flavour to their coastal spirit, bringing elemental balance.

Glenglassaugh Sandend, Inspired by the crescent beach of Sandend Bay where the distillery resides. This non age statement bottling is matured in a combination of bourbon, sherry and manzanilla casks, and bottled at a bold 50.5% abv. This expression has an aroma of ‘soft buttery vanilla ice cream drenched in tropical fruit, with chocolate and a touch of sea salt’.

Click here to view our range of Glenglassaugh whisky

Written by Oliver Partington