Lagavulin Distillery

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Pronunciation laga’voolin Pronunciation
Translation The Mill in the Valley
Region Islay
Distiller United Malt and Grain Distillers (UMGD)
Owner United Distillers & Vintners (UDV) (Diageo plc)
Address Port Ellen
Isle of Islay
PA42 7DZ
Telephone +44 (0)1496 - 30 27 30
+44 (0)1496 - 30 27 33 (Fax)
LatLong 55° 38’ 06.9” N   06° 07’ 40.0” W
Altitude 6 m
Grid Reference NR403457
Open to public January - December : mo - fr tours at 09:30, 11:15 and 14:30 by appointment only
Restricted tours at 15:45 on Fridays and 09:30 and 11:15 on Saturdays during summer months
Restricted during winter months, closed between Christmas and New Year
Admission charged
Children under 8 years not admitted to the production areaSource : Islay & Jura Distillery Tour Times 2008 leaflet

late 1700s
Up to ten illicit stills were operating in the area
The first distillery on this site was founded by John Johnston, who continued to operate at least until 1833
The second distillery on this site was founded Archibald Campbell
Archibald Campbell & Co., when Archibald Campbell withdrew
John Johnston occupied both distilleries
Two distilleries were present in the bay, which merged to form Lagavulin Distillery under the ownership of the Graham brothers and there partner, James Logan Mackie, uncle of Peter Mackie, who later became one of the "Big Five" in the whisky industry
John Morrison operated, when bankrupt (see Kildalton)
John Morrison took over the second distillery
by 1837
There was only one distillery, occupied by Donald Johnston. This is probably the ancestor of the present Lagavulin
John Graham
Walter Graham
James L. Mackie & Co., when incorporated as Mackie & Co. (Distillers) Ltd.
The distillery was visited by Alfred Barnard
Two old buildings, which had at one time been a small distillery named Malt Mill Distillery, built in 1816, were restored to produce a whisky according to the original techniques. Only peat was burned in the kilns
Sir Peter Mackie died and Mackie & Co. reconstructed as White Horse Distillers Ltd.
Joined the Distillers Company Ltd. (DCL)
Transferred to Scottish Malt Distillers Ltd. (SMD)
The ’original’ distillery, built in 1908, was closed down to make room for a larger still house for the main distillery
Still house rebuilt, incorporating stills from Malt Mill Distillery, built within the complex 1908. Four stills
The product won Best Single Malt award
Licensed to White Horse Distillers Ltd.
The product won a gold medal at the International Wine and Spirit Competition
The product won a gold medal at the International Wine and Spirit Competition
The product won a gold medal at the International Wine and Spirit Competition
Owned by United Distillers & Vintners Ltd. (UDV)
The Distillers Edition won Best Single Malt Over 12 Years at the International Wine and Spirit Competition Awards
Owned by Diageo plc

Technical Specifications
General Water Source
Sholum Loch and Lochan
  Annual Output 2,300,000 litres of alcohol (2005)
  Finished Spirit (phenols) average 16 - 18 ppm
  Blending Roles
none, small role in White Horse
Malt Malt Source Port Ellen
  Malt Type Optic
  Malt Specification (phenols) average 35 ppm
  Own Malting Floor no
  Malt Storage 360 tonnes
Mill Porteus, installed 1963
  Grist Storage 4.32 tonnes
Mashing Mash Tun 1 made of stainless steel, Lauter
  Mash Size 4.32 tonnes
  First Water 16,400 litres at 69°C
  Second Water continuous process (5,000 litres at 68°C added
  Third Water continuous process (18,000 litres at 68°C - 78
  Fourth Water n/a
Fermentation Washbacks 10 made of Larch
  Washback Charge 21,300 litres
  Yeast Mauri and Quest cultured yeast (50/50)
  Amount of Yeast 50 kg per Washback
  Length of Fermentation 55 hours
  Initial Fermentation Temp. 18°C
  Strength of Wash 8.9% abv
Distillation Wash Stills 2, onion shaped, 12,300 litres each
  Wash Still Built all : 1966
  Wash Still Charge 10,500 litres (85% of capacity)
  Heat Source steam coils and pans
  Wash Still Height 22 feet 6 inches (6.89 m)
  Lyne Arm steeply descending
  Low Wines Run c. 4 hours
  Low Wines Collection Range 50% - 0.1% abv
  Spirit Stills
2, onion shaped, 12,900 litres each
  Spirit Still Built all : 1966
  Spirit Still Charge 12,200 litres (95% of capacity)
  Strength of Spirit Still Charge c. 25% abv
  Heat Source steam coils
  Spirit Still Height 18 feet 10 inches (5.73 m)
  Lyne Arm gently descending
  Coolers internally sited, 9 feet (2.74 m), each containing
  Foreshot Run 30 minutes
  Spirit Run 5 hours
  Feints Run 4 hours 30 minutes
  Spirit Cut 72% - 59% abv
  Distilling Strength 68.5% abv
Storage Storage Strength 63.5% abv
  Average Spirit Yield 405 litres of pure alcohol per tonne of malt (2003
  Disposal of Pot Ale/Spent Lees tankered to Caol Ila, then dispersed in Sound of I
  Type of Casks 99.5% third-fill American oak hogsheads
0.5% third-fill sherry butts
  Warehouses 3 on site (#1, #2 and #3, dunnage), 9 at Port Ellen (#2, #3, #4, #5, #6, #7, #8, #12, dunnage), 1 at Caol Ila (dunnage)
  Vatting and Bottling Location non-Islay stocks matured at Blackgrange

Sources used