Daftmill

Daftmill is a small farm distillery in the Kingdom of Fife in Scotland. The young Lowland distillery produces only extremely little whisky and is very much in demand due to the strong limitation of the licification. It was only after twelve years that Daftmill published their first single malt, with great success.

Daftmill Whisky

Daftmill, which translates into about as much as ‘crazy mill’, is a comparatively young distillery in the Lowlands. However, it was founded back in 2005 and thus started in front of the big distillery boom of the 2010s. At that time, the Lowlands were still an extremely sparse whisky region populated with distilleries. Only Auchentoshan, Bladnoch and Glenkinchie offered single malt from the Lowlands at this time. Daftmill is a classic farm distillery, as it would have been possible to make anywhere in Scotland over the past centuries.

Today, the comparatively elaborate and local approach of the distillery is uncommon, but experiences a renaissance. Daftmill produces the barley for its whisky itself, but can therefore not sustain the production continuously. Thus, Daftmill is one of the smallest whisky distilleries in Scotland, especially as far as the whisky is concerned. The bottling of the distillery is, on the basis of the mostly limited numbers, in whisky circles in great demand and usually sold out quickly. Daftmill has, unlike most of the new distilleries, first published their first whisky in 2018 with proud 12 years of age. For so much patience, Daftmill truly deserves respect.

House style

How does Daftmill Single Malt taste?Daftmill Single Malt Whisky is a classic Lowland whisky. The Daftmill Single Malt is therefore not peated or smoky. The spirit is light and floral and turns into a fruity whisky with light herbals and floral notes.

Production

How is Daftmill Whisky produced? Daftmill is a real farm distillery where a lot of value is placed on local and organic production. This refers to both the ingredients for the whisky, as well as the construction of the actual distillery. This was largely implemented by local craftspeople. An old mill is used as a distillery building, which houses the stills made in Rothes and the Maischebottich. The water for the Daftmill Single Malt comes from a private source on the farm site.

Production at Daftmill is not continuous. Rather, the whisky production is adapted to the existing farm farm and to the seasonal conditions of an agricultural business. Correspondingly, production times are coupled to seed and harvest times. This procedure allows the distillery to produce only two months in the summer and two months in winter. On average, 20,000 liters are distilled. Due to the small production, only 100 barrels per year are produced. For context other distilleries produce between 200,000 and 10,000,000 liters annually.

For Daftmill, ecological responsibility means that the majority of the ingredients come from their own production. The barley produced on their own fields is only processed in local cases, true to the motto ‘Support your local dealers’. Moreover, because of the high energy consumption, it is not produced in the cold months. The barley produced by Daftmill is in great demand in the whisky world. Only around 15% will keep the farm distillery for itself, while the rest will be sold to distilleries such as Highland Park and Macallan.

In order to create the light, fruity classic Lowland style, Daftmill pays attention to a clear regular wort. Fermenting is extremely long for Scottish conditions and can last up to 104 hours. It is distilled from the traditional forsyths in Rothes on classical copper stills. Most traditional high-quality single malt producers burn on Pot Stills by Forsyths. Here, too, one pays attention to the light character of the whisky by a narrow ‘cut’ of the heart piece. The Wash Still holds 3000 liters, the Spirit Still around 2000 liters. Most of the production is currently matured in Ex-Bourbon casks. However, some of the whisky is also stored in sherry butts and rum barrels.

History

The two brothers, Ian and Francis Cuthbert, applied for a distillery license in 2003. As local farmers and owners of the Daftmill Farm in sixth generation, they brought a lot of local ties with them. For almost two years, the restoration of the historic mills-buildings that still came from Napoleonic times took place. The first Daftmill raw spirit flowed from the copper stills of Forsyths from Rothes. Together with Kilchoman on Islay, Daftmill can be described as a pioneer of Scotland’s new micro-and farm distilleries.

Distillery Factsheet

Name Pronounced AKA Region Country of Origin
Daftmill Lowlands Scotland
Status Active Whisky Type Website Tours Available
Active 2005 - Present Malt Daftmill Tour Link
Manager Distiller Blender Owned by Parent Group
Francis Cuthbert Independent; Francis and Ian Cuthbert

Daftmill Timeline:

Autumn 2003: Permission was granted to the brothers Francis and Ian Cuthbert to convert the old mill buildings at Daftmill Farmhouse, which date back to Napoleonic times, into a distillery

2005-Nov-30: License was granted

2005-Dec-16: First distillation of spirit