Our Story
The Distillery

Our Story

We are The Glasgow Distillery Co.

Here's a deep dive into our story here at Glasgow distillery.

The Start
December 2012

The Start

Founders Liam Hughes and Mike Hayward embark on a mission to bring single malt whisky distilling back to the city of Glasgow and officially incorporate ‘The Glasgow Distillery Company Ltd.’ Named after one of the first licensed distilleries in Scotland. The original Glasgow Distillery Company was founded in 1770, subsequently operated under a number of different names, and produced unpeated, peated, and triple distilled single malt until its eventual closure in 1902.

The distillery begins to take shape and the mission of bringing premium spirits production back to the city has begun.

A Home
August 2013

A Home

A site for the new distillery is found on the outskirts of Glasgow in Hillington, and work soon begins on plans to construct the city’s first new independent single malt whisky distillery in over 100 years. It's not a traditional setting for a distillery, but this will not be a traditional whisky distillery. 

Work Begins
September 2013

Work Begins

A repurposed warehouse is utilised to house the equipment within; planning efficient use of this space is paramount and the shape of the distillery infrastructure starts to take shape. 

Power!
November 2013

Power!

Our boiler is installed adjacent to the outside wall of the distillery; a powerful dual fuel boiler named the Wee Chieftan. The production is nearly ready now that there is a suitable power source.  

The First Still
August 2014

The First Still

The distillery welcomes the arrival of our first still - a 500-litre copper pot white spirits still, named Annie. Annie consist of a copper pot, a helmet for vapour infusion, and a 6-plate column. 

Our First Product
Our First Product
October 2014

Our First Product

Makar Original Dry Gin, the first product from the distillery, is launched. Juniper forward and bold, the name derives from the ancient Scots word for a poet or bard. Makar Gin is Glasgow’s first ever (legally produced) gin and is soon found in bars and restaurants across the city, the country and then the world.

Whisky Preparations Continue
December 2014

Whisky Preparations Continue

Two 17-ton grain silos are installed into the rear of the building, allowing for whisky production to commence. At the same time, our first 5000-litre fermentors and 1-ton mash tun are installed.  

Whisky is on the Horizon
January 2015

Whisky is on the Horizon

The whisky stills arrive. Two copper pot whisky stills are installed, a 2500-litre wash still, Tara, and a 1500-litre spirit still, Mhairi. Both stills are named after family members of our founding partners, small and compact, they ensure maximum copper contact to give the distillery a bright and fruity new make spirit. Their size and shape allow the distillery to create a range of whisky styles that span across a wide flavour spectrum.

A Spirit is Born
A Spirit is Born
March 2015

A Spirit is Born

On the 5th March 2015, the very first cask of single malt scotch whisky is filled. In 3 years, Glasgow will once again have a single malt whisky to call its own.

Made by Glasgow
June 2017

Made by Glasgow

Planning is underway for our first release - every element of packaging is considered from the heavyweight stopper to a bespoke glass bottle design that is inspired by our industrial heritage. The distillery works with Glasgow designers and suppliers to provide each component part that will come together in 2018 to become our first Glasgow Distillery whisky release. 

Glasgow 1770 is revealed
May 2018

Glasgow 1770 is revealed

A name for our single malt scotch whisky is chosen, 'Glasgow 1770', named after the date that the original Glasgow Distillery was founded - a celebration of our city's great heritage of whisky making, and a product designed for the future; a reflection of contemporary urban distillation.  

Glasgow Single Malt Returns
Glasgow Single Malt Returns
June 2018

Glasgow Single Malt Returns

Glasgow 1770 Single Malt Scotch Whisky is launched into the world, with 5000 bottles of the first release made available. Release No.1 (which will evolve to become 'The Original'), is a double distilled unpeated single malt matured in first fill ex-bourbon casks and finished in virgin American white oak.

All 5000 bottles sell out in under 48 hours via an online ballot, the release sparking interest across the globe.

Expansion
January 2019

Expansion

Construction begins on a new mezzanine office within the distillery to accommodate the growing sales, marketing, logistics and production teams. 

A small but tight-knit group of spirit enthusiasts, each team member in the company is based within the distillery to ensure a real connection with the growing range of premium spirits.

Banditti Club Rum emerges
Banditti Club Rum emerges
March 2019

Banditti Club Rum emerges

Banditti Club Rum is launched; the name taken from a band of ardent spirits who would meet in Glasgow’s local public houses in the late 18th and early 19th century, singing, eating and playing music late into the night. The first expression – a spiced rum – is matured and spiced with a selection of fresh fruit and spices without any chill filtration, colouring, sugar or artificial flavouring added.

New Capacity for New Demand
August 2019

New Capacity for New Demand

Two new whisky stills, identical replicas of the original pair, are installed to meet the growing demand for Glasgow single malt. Our two new stills are christened Frances and Margaret in honour of two of Glasgow’s most iconic and influential artists, the MacDonald sisters. Whisky production increases to 200 litres of alcohol every year. 

Our Peated Single Malt is Launched
Our Peated Single Malt is Launched
September 2019

Our Peated Single Malt is Launched

Glasgow 1770 Peated, a rich and smoky single malt, is launched to critical acclaim and is soon awarded the title of ‘Best Lowland Single Malt’ at the International Whisky Competition (it would go on to win this title for the next three years, until it was won by Glasgow 1770 The Original).  

The Glasgow 1770 range is now available across more than 10 global markets as interest grows for this exciting new whisky brand.

Glasgow's Own Vodka
February 2020

Glasgow's Own Vodka

G52 Botanical Vodka is launched. The Fresh Citrus and Rich Coffee expressions are handcrafted with a range of carefully considered botanicals to create a complex and sophisticated spirit, boasting 100% natural ingredients. Each batch is made with a selection of fresh fruit and real spices, encapsulating our commitment for authentic and transparent products that are made with real ingredients and packed with flavour.

Triple Distilled is Launched to complete our 'Signature Range'
May 2020

Triple Distilled is Launched to complete our 'Signature Range'

The highly anticipated Glasgow 1770 Triple Distilled expression is launched. Smooth and vibrant, this new release joins the distillery’s Original and Peated expressions to collectively form the complete Glasgow 1770 Signature Range: three single malt expressions that each showcase one of our distillation styles and collectively showcase the breadth and depth of whisky flavour that is made at The Glasgow Distillery; truly Contemporary Urban Distillers. 

Malt Riot is Born
Malt Riot is Born
June 2020

Malt Riot is Born

The distillery’s first blended malt whisky, Malt Riot, is launched and tells the tale of the 1725 malt tax protests which originated in Glasgow before spreading throughout Scotland. The brand celebrates those who stood up to protect the Scotch malt whisky industry and contribute to the legacy which it holds to this day as the world’s most celebrated spirit. Malt Riot is a blend of Speyside single malts with unpeated Glasgow 1770 Single Malt Scotch Whisky at its heart.

Industry Recognition
November 2020

Industry Recognition

The Glasgow Distillery is named ‘Scottish Whisky Distillery of the Year’ at the annual Scottish Whisky Awards. Shortlisted against industry titans, The Glasgow Distillery team picked up the ultimate award after demonstrating exceptional growth and innovation.

Collecting the award, Liam, Founder, commented: “The quality of talent, not just from the winners, but from those who were nominated as finalists clearly demonstrates the strength of the Scotch Whisky industry today and we are so proud to play our part in something that is so loved and respected around the globe, not just here in Scotland.”

The Small Batch Series is Released
August 2022

The Small Batch Series is Released

The Distillery launches a new series of innovative and experimental whisky releases under a new Glasgow 1770 Single Malt Scotch Whisky sub-brand: the Small Batch Series.

The series exists to push flavour and showcase the versatility and exceptional quality of the whiskies that are being made at The Glasgow Distillery. The labelling is designed to showcase transparency – detailing each stage of the whisky’s journey. These releases are an ongoing set of interesting maturations and finishes, including Beer Cask, Tokaji, Red Wine, Cognac, Tequila and Ruby Port cask finishes.

A Fresh Look for an exciting future
January 2023

A Fresh Look for an exciting future

The distillery launches a new visual identity – reflecting the ethos and mission of The Glasgow Distillery Co.

A house of premium spirit brands, the new identity highlights the distillery’s emphasis on storytelling. Telling unique Glasgow stories that are full of spirit, each of the spirit brands tells its own unique and memorable story, with consumers sharing and creating their own stories together.

 

Looking forwards
Present

Looking forwards

With our products now in over 25 countries, and counting, consumers around the globe are enjoying more of our spirits than ever before. With a growing team, an expanding production, and a well-earned reputation for producing excellent spirits, the future looks bright for The Glasgow Distillery Co.

We can't wait to share the next chapter with you.  

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