Distillery Opened Capacity Malting Floor Washback Type Number of Washbacks Number of Wash Stills Number of Spirit Stills
1798 1 million litres Dismissed Wood 4 2 2

The Tobermory distillery was founded by John Sinclair in 1798 and still remains the only distillery on the island of Mull, in the Hebrides on the west coast of Scotland.

At the beginning, the Tobermory distillery was named Ledaig which in Gaelic means 'safe heaven'.

In the following years, the demand for whisky plummeted, and the distillery was closed one time, after the reopening, the distillery changed owner several times, until the Great Depression of the 1930s where the distillery would cease to operate for 41 long years.

In 1972 a shipping company in Liverpool and the sherrymaker Domecq bought the buildings and embark on refurbishment. When the work was completed it was named Ledaig Distillery Ltd. However in 1975 the distillery went bankrupt, and closed again.

In the following years, the Tobermory distillery changed ownership other times until 2013 when Distell Group Ltd. of South Africa bought the previous owner of the Tobermory distillery.

In 2017 a phase of restoration of the original stills began, along with an expansion of the visitor center.

  • 1798 John Sinclair founds the distillery.
  • 1837 The distillery closes.
  • 1878 John Hopkins & Company buys the distillery.
  • 1916 Distillers Company Limited (DCL) takes over John Hopkins & Company.
  • 1930 The distillery closes.
  • 1972 A shipping company in Liverpool and the sherrymaker Domecq buy the buildings and embark on refurbishment. When work is completed it is named Ledaig Distillery Ltd.
  • 1975 Ledaig Distillery Ltd files for bankruptcy and the distillery closes again.
  • 1979 The estate agent Kirkleavington Property buys the distillery, forms a new company, Tobermory Distillers Ltd and starts production.
  • 1982 No production. Some of the buildings are converted into flats and some are rented to a dairy company for cheese storage.
  • 1989 Production resumes.
  • 1993 Burn Stewart Distillers buys Tobermory for £600,000 and pays an additional £200,000 for the whisky supply.
  • 2002 Trinidad-based venture capitalists CL Financial buys Burn Stewart Distillers for £50m.
  • 2005 A 32 year old from 1972 is launched.
  • 2007 A Ledaig 10 year old is released.
  • 2008 A limited edition Tobermory 15 year old is released.
  • 2013 Burn Stewart Distillers is sold to Distell Group Ltd. A 40 year old Ledaig is released.
  • 2015 Ledaig 18 years and 42 years are released together with Tobermory 42 years.

The distillery is equipped with a traditional 5 ton cast iron mash tun, four wooden washbacks with a fermentation time of 50 to 90 hours and two pair of stills. Two of the stills were replaced in August 2014.

The core range of Tobermory distillery consist of:

  • 10 year old Ledaig
  • 10 year old Tobermory
  • Ledaig Moscatel Finish 20 year old

Image source: Tobermory official Website & Twitter