Islay Spirits, a subsidiary of the Vintage Malt Whisky Company, has partnered with The High Road Rum Company to open the first dedicated Rum distillery on Islay. The new distillery is set to open in the former Hastie’s Lemonade Factory and Dunn’s Depot in Port Ellen.
The project received planning permission in January 2020, with two firms aiming to refurbish the building and ready it for Rum production. Work is nearly complete on the site, and it is expected to be operational by late autumn 2021.
The High Road Rum Company’s Ben Inglis, who has been developing his own rum recipe for several years, will run the business. The venture will be funded initially by Vintage Malt, which will also provide support across administration, sales, and marketing.
“Islay is the spiritual home of our company and we owe our success in a large part to the land and its people,” said Andrew Crook, managing director of the Vintage Malt Whisky Company. “We now have an opportunity to put some investment back into the island and we hope that the local community will enjoy seeing a business emerge and hopefully develop over the years.
“We still have a long journey ahead but we are delighted to be working with Ben and Scott and very encouraged by all the informal support and help we and they have had along the way so far.”
Independent bottler the Vintage Malt Whisky Company has produced Islay malt whisky for almost 30 year. They produce the Finlaggan single malt brand, which is named after the famous Islay home of the Lords of the Isles.
In other Islay distillery news, Bruichladdich and Octomore both recently announced they have jobs available. Both brands have brand manager positions open at the moment, which could be idle opportunity for any Scotch lovers out there.