The Cotswolds distillery is one of the most exciting whisky projects in England. The young distillery produces high-quality single malt whisky with local materials and enormous experimentation, which can compete with its Scottish neighbors. Be sure to taste this exceptional English whisky!
The Cotswolds Distillery, founded in 2014, is located in the heart of England in the region of the same name, which has been part of the AONBs - Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty since 1966. It is one of the few English distilleries that focuses on single malt whisky, and the second in the country since the closure of Lea Valley Distillery in 1903. The Cotswolds distillery is a fairly manual distillery, which currently produces whisky, gin and liqueurs.
What does Cotswolds Whisky taste like?In March 2017, the first Cotswolds single malt was bottled with a maturation period of three years. With full transparency about the type of barley, the month of bottling and the number of bottles in the first batch, bottling shows the way for a success story. Despite his youth, the young malt whisky surprises with pleasant honey and peach notes on the nose. On the palate there are light fruity notes, orange jam and malty caramel. The finish is medium long with a fading sweetness of sugar beet syrup.
We can look forward to a number of exciting whiskies from the Cotswolds in the future.
How is Cotswolds whisky made?The fact that the single malt from Cotswolds knows how to convince at a young age is partly due to the sadly deceased whisky mastermind Dr. Jim Swan, who helped fine-tune the production.
Cotswolds currently produces approximately 300,000 bottles of whisky a year. With its two Forsyths stills of 2,500 liters and 1,600 liters, the Cotswolds is even behind the old Edradour Distillery, one of the smallest Scottish whisky producers, in terms of size and production capacity.
The English distillery remains loyal to the region’s production and so only barley from local farms is used, which will later be found on the label. Extremely unusual in the whisky industry: Cotswolds Singe Malt is distilled from barley, which was malted 100% on traditional malting floors. The traditional company Warminster Maltings makes this possible. Hardly any other whisky can still claim to have been produced with so much manual labor. It is bottled without the addition of color and without cold filtration.
Long fermentation times and the expansion in a variety of exciting barrels such as Madeira, Moscatel, rum, sherry and apple brandy let us look forward to a rich portfolio of future tasty English single malts with great anticipation.
Cotswolds’ high quality standards are also reflected in its in-house gin production. In the 500-liter gin still from the German family company Arnold Holstein, the clear neutral spirit is mixed with a load of botanicals, supposedly 10 times more than is normally used for gin. The lime and grapefruit peels used are not purchased dried as usual, but peeled by hand. Cotswolds hopes this will result in a higher concentration of oils and aromas in the later distillate. Similar to whisky production, only the heart is kept in the distillation process and bottled as gin. This is done as a so-called “single shot distillation”, so the pure run is no longer blended with neutral spirit. In addition, Cotswolds also decides against cold filtration for gin, which can lead to the so-called “Louche effect”, a clouding of the spirit when water, ice or tonic is added.
The Cotswolds Distilling Company was founded by former New York hedge fund manager Daniel Szor, who, after decades in the financial industry, finally devoted himself to whisky and gin production. The planning of the distillery was carried out in cooperation with Harry Cockburn, the former Master Distiller at Bowmore and whisky icon Dr. Jim Swan performed.
|Name||Pronounced||AKA||Region||Country of Origin|
|Status||Active||Whisky Type||Website||Tours Available|
|Active||2014 - Present||Malt||Cotswolds||Not Available|
|Manager||Distiller||Blender||Owned by||Parent Group|
|Harry Cockburn||Daniel Szor|
Can I tour Cotswolds?
No, unfortunately Cotswolds distillery is not open to the public for tours