Most commonly known as Royal Lochnagar, this distillery is located on Abergeldie Estate, Deeside. The current distillery is the third distillery to be built on that site. At a time when illegal distillation brought fortunes to smuggling gangs, building a legal distillery after the Excise Act 1823 was seen as a challenge to their operations by gang leaders.
John Begg, the founder, saw two of his distilleries burnt to the ground on mysterious circumstances before he built the current one. In 1848, to protect his third distillery, he invited his new neighbours, Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, to tour the distillery. In what marketeers call 'the first ever distillery tour' the royal couple were treated to Lochnagar new make spirit. The Queen became an avid fan of mixing Lochnagar new make with red wine.....
Some weeks after their visit, the Queen and Prince granted a royal warrant to the distillery. No one would ever dare to burn Lochnagar again. The whisky produced there became popular among blenders and by 1916 it was absorbed by the larger John Dewar & Sons Co. The distillery was sold to Distillers Company Limited (DCL) in 1925.
The distillery is the smallest in the Diageo portfolio and most of its production ends up in the Johnnie Walker blends. Three official distillery releases are very popular among the general public.
The style of Lochnagar is grassy, with a medium weight to it and plenty of yellow fruits. Clear wort, long fermentation and maximum reflux produce a spirit that can be aged in ex-sherry casks.
Want to learn more? Then why not try one of our whisky tastings