Strathisla distillery

The Strathisla Distillery is arguably the oldest, continuously operating distillery in the Scottish Highlands. And with its high gable and two pagoda roofs, Strathisla is perhaps one of the most beautiful distilleries in the Highlands. At that time the distillery was still called Milltown, from 1825 it became Milton, although the whiskey produced had already been sold under the name Stathisla.

Strathisla is probably one of the most beautiful whiskey distilleries in Scotland. The picturesque distillery draws numerous visitors to the Speyside village of Keith every year. In addition to the Strathisla Single Malt, the distillery also serves as the brand home of the popular blended Scotch brand Chivas Regal.

Strathisla Distillery

Near the Isla River, on the edge of Keith, Strathisla is one of the prettiest distilleries in Scotland. The cozy visitor center was recently expanded and rebuilt and welcomes many whiskey enthusiasts every year. In addition to the Strathisla Single Malt, the distillery also serves as the brand home of the popular blended Scotch brand Chivas Regal.

House style

What does Strathisla single malt taste like? The malt from this distillery is floral and fruity. A classic representative of theSpeyside whiskeys. He likes to be a little sweeter and has a clear malt aroma. Anyone looking for a mild fruity whiskey is in good hands here.

In 1830 William Longmore bought the still and renamed it Strathisla forty years after the purchase. There followed a change of name and owner and even a foreclosure auction, until 1950 the Chivas Brothers took over the still.

It was only in the 1870s that the name of the whiskey distillery was renamed Strathisla.

has its place in Keith on the Speyside. It has been owned by Chivas Brothers Ltd since 1995 . for Pernod Ricard. The distillery, founded in 1786, is the oldest in operation in the Speyside and is also said to be the distillery with the most images.

The name is derived from the Isla River, which flows near the distillery. It is also on the Scottish Whiskey Trail as is Glenlivet . It is one of the smaller distilleries and has a production capacity of 2.4 million liters.

Strathisla is said to be the most photographed distillery in Scotland. Well, at least it’s one of the most beautiful. In the picture-perfect landscape of the distillery is also the Broomhill spring with soft, very good water, which is also used for production.Until 1950, the company still operated its own malt floors. In the meantime, the mostly unturfed malt comes from large malting plants. Bottling is either carried out in the Glen Keith Destille, which also belongs to Chivas and is not even 100 meters away, or the spirit is transported further in large tanks.Strathisla Malt Whiskey is still not that easy to get as a single malt, since Chivas uses it as a lead malt in some of its premium blands and uses the distillery’s largest capacity to do so. At the moment there is only the 12 year old as an original bottling, but there are some very remarkable and old independent bottlings.

The oldest of the buildings still standing today, including one of the first malted kilns in pagoda roofs in Scotland, date back to the 1880s and were built after a fire destroyed most of the previous buildings. The most important equipment of today’s distillery includes a copper mash barrel with a volume of five tons, ten fermentation tanks made of Oregon pine wood and four copper stills. The warehouses and a bottling plant are located elsewhere.

The whiskey produced here is sold as a single malt and is an important part of the Chivas Regal whiskey blend. The Chivas brothers use the site as their headquarters and also maintain a test laboratory here.

A visitor center offers tours of the distillery. Tastings of the whiskey produced in Strathisla are available in a brandy bar, which is in proper style in a former mash room.

Strathisla is a whiskey distillery in Keith, Scotland. It belongs to the Speyside region.


The water comes from the Broomhill Spring, which is located near the distillery. Strathisla has a mash tun (4.84 tons) made of stainless steel and eleven fermentation tanks (each 24,500 liters) made of Douglas fir. The whiskey is distilled in two wash stills, each with a spirit still downstream. Sherry and bourbon barrels are used for the storage . The Strathisla Single Malt is rather soft and mild and is the lead malt on Chiva’s shelf. Strathisla is one of the smaller distilleries in Scotland. The production capacity is stated at approximately 2.4 million liters / year.

How is Strathisla Whiskey Produced? In Strathisla, four stills burn around million liters a year. A 4.8 ton stainless steel mash tun and eleven Douglas fir fermentation tanks are used. The water for the production comes from the Broomhill Spring. The whiskey is aged in both ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks. FromSingle malt The distillery has owner bottlings, but also independent ones, such as from Gordon & MacPhail. The distillery’s standard whiskey has aged for 12 years. A large part of the production is for theChiva’s shelf Blended Scotch whiskey used by playing a supporting role.

History : In 1786 George Taylor and Alexander Milne founded today’s distillery under the names Milltown or Milton. It was then taken over by William Longmore in 1830 and renamed Strathisla in the 1870s . Around six years later, a fire broke out and destroyed a large part of the distillery. In 1890 the distillery was renamed again. This time in Milton. After the current owners had to go to prison in 1949 for tax evasion, the existence of the distillery was also threatened. There was an auction at which Chivas Brothers Ltd was awarded the contract. The distillery was again named Strathisla and in 1965 two more stills (now four) were added. In 1995 the entire Chivas group was taken over by Pernod Ricard.

Around 1830 the distillery was taken over by William Longmore. His son-in-law J. Geddes Brown took over the distillery from 1868 and turned the company into a company, William Longmorn & Company Ltd. It was also Brown who renamed the distillery: Henceforth the distillery was called Strathisla. In 1876 a fire damaged the distillery. What the fire was unable to do was a dust explosion in the malt house in 1879. It destroyed the company and caused great damage. In the course of the necessary rebuilding, the distillery is electrified (the waterwheel with which the electrical energy was generated was still in operation until 1965) and essentially gets its current appearance, that of the way by webcamis transmitted into the world. From 1890 the distillery was renamed Milton.

The Milton distillery was owned by Longmorn & Company until 1950, when the company and the distillery were auctioned off. A James Barclay acquired Longmorn & Co. for £ 71,000 to immediately resell to the Chivas Brothers. Some sources say that Barclay sold to Seagrams. In fact, it was the Chivas Brothers that were bought by Seagrams the year before, in 1949. And the new owners gave the distillery a new name: from now on the distillery was called Strathisla again.

In 2000 the Seagram Company was smashed and so the Chivas Brothers and thus Strathisla came to Pernod Ricard. Now I want to turn to the content of this bottle of Strathisla 12yo, which is unusually shaped for whiskey bottles …

Strathisla in Speyside on the outskirts of Keith on the River Isla, was founded in 1786 and was initially called Milltown. After a few changes of name and owner, in 1949, already owned by Chivas Brothers, she received the name under which her whiskey had been sold for a long time: Strathisla. The many disasters that hit the distillery, a fire in 1876 and an explosion in 1887, also contribute to its appearance today, but the renovations have not harmed it. The owner’s bottling is 12 years old, previously it was only available from independent bottlers. In 2000 the distillery, together with the Chivas and Glenlivet Group, was sold to Pernod Ricard. It is not only one of the oldest, but also one of the most beautiful in Scotland. The sister distillery Strathmill was built in their old mill. Strathisla is now marketed as the home of the blends Chivas Regal, in which the Strathisla is a key ingredient. The marketing goes so far that the author was able to taste the painting on a visit in 2003, but only Chiva’s shelves were sold in various expressions in the visitor center’s own shop. It wasn’t a bottle of Strathisla on the shelves. Nothing against blends, of course not, but you can also overdo marketing. The painting is well balanced, rather dry. It wasn’t a bottle of Strathisla on the shelves. Nothing against blends, of course not, but you can also overdo marketing. The painting is well balanced, rather dry. It wasn’t a bottle of Strathisla on the shelves. Nothing against blends, of course not, but you can also overdo marketing. The painting is well balanced, rather dry.

The history of StrathislaStrathisla was founded in 1786 by Alexander Milne and George Taylor under the name Milltown on the outskirts of the city of Keith. However, the whiskey that was produced in the Milltown Distillery came on the market as “Strathisla” right from the start. In 1951, the distillery also adopted the name Strathisla - referring to the Isla River, which flows through Keith. “Strath” means river valley.The distillery has been through a lot of turbulence over the years: several fires, explosions, bankruptcies.Since the takeover by the Chivas Brothers in 1950, Strathisla is now the spiritual home of Chivas Regal.

Strathisla factsheet

Name Pronounced AKA Region Country of Origin
Strathisla Speyside Scotland
Status Active Whisky Type Website Tours Available
Active 1786 - Present Malt Strathisla Not Available
Manager Distiller Blender Owned by Parent Group
Colin Scott Pernod Ricard

Strathisla Timeline:

1785: Strathisla 1 George Taylor took a lease for an piece of land from the Earl of Seafield to built a distillery

1786: Strathisla 1 Founded as Milltown Distillery by George Taylor and Alexander Milne, under the name of the Milltown Distillery Co., named after a former owner Ogilvy of Milton

1820s: Strathisla 1 Distillery sold to a local saddler by George Taylor who suffered a riding accident

1825-28: Strathisla 1 McDonald Ingram & Co., Milton

1828-29: Strathisla 1 John McDonald & Co.

early 1830s: Strathisla 1 Acquired by William Longmore, a banker and grain merchant, from the local saddler

1870s-c.1890: Strathisla 1 Distillery known as Strathisla from the 1870s to about 1890

1876: Strathisla 1 A fire destroyed a lot of machinery in the Milton Distillery

1878: Strathisla 1 William Longmore & Co.

1879: Strathisla 1 An explosion damaged machinery and buildings in the Milton Distillery. Equipment was replaced and William Longmore & Co., a company formed with Longmore’s son-in-law J. Geddes Brown, became managing partner

1880: Strathisla 1 Incorporated as a limited company

1881: Strathisla 1 Bottling Plant installed after death of William Longmore by end of century The whisky produced is called Strathisla shortly after begin WWII Jay Pomeroy, a London financer, bought William Longmore & Co. and sent the entire production to London. Customs and Excise became suspicious and found out the companies buying the whisky were fictitious and Pomeroy was selling the Whisky under different names on the black market. He was charged and found guilty of tax evasion of £111,038.

during WWII: Strathisla 1 Milton Distillery was in the hands of the receivers

1946: Strathisla 1 Longmore converted to a private company by George Pomeroy, a London financier

1949: Strathisla 1 George Pomeroy found guilty of tax evasion

1950: Strathisla 1 Company was wound up and distillery sold at auction to James Barclay, acting for the Seagram Company of Canada, and transferred to Chivas Brothers Ltd., a newly acquired Seagram subsidiary

mid-1950s: Strathisla 1 Name reverted to Strathisla

1965: Strathisla 1 Extended from two to four stills, now all steam-heated

1992: Strathisla 1 The elder stills became steamheated?? (see 1965)

1999: Strathisla 1 Owned by Chivas Brothers

2004: Strathisla 1 Owned by Chivas Brothers

Can I tour Strathisla?

Yes Strathisla distillery is tourable. On Trip Advisor the distillery has been rated as excellent by 362 of 464 tours to date. This gives Strathisla an overall rating of 4.5

Latest reviews

Blending Experience Awesomeness by Mikthw

1st class blending experience, thoroughly enjoyed the whole thing. Delivered and hosted brilliantly by James and Alice, very friendly and knowledgeable, they make the whole experience personal. Thank you so much, we’ll be back to go again 🙏🏻😊

Great Experience- Well Worth a Visit by Tedber

Can’t score this experience highly enough. We were up visiting Keith for a few days and booked into the Strathisla tasting session. Wasn’t sure I actually liked whisky that much but thought the whole experience would be interesting and different. I was right, we had James, a young man who was very informative and humorous. I was very interested in the history of the ‘still. Due to Covid restrictions we couldn’t get a tour of the plant but this didn’t deter from the experience in any way. The group was limited to 6 and the table divided so as to be as Covid safe as we could possibly be. We were given five different whiskies to sample of different ages and strengths and asked to rate them. I don’t blended whisky (which is all I had tried before) and some of the samples weren’t to my taste but 2 of the 5 I found I did like. I added a small amount of water to mine and was assured this is perfectly acceptable. Don’t worry if you are driving either because they will give you the sample drams to take away. When we came away we were given 6 Strathisla whisky glasses in a box and a complementary miniature bottle. Happy days 😂. Definitely recommend booking this.

Classic Distillery, Home of Chivas! by Harshith Prabhu

Visited this distillery along with my college group for an education tour, superbly maintained and a true experience for Whisky aficionados, the living area is grand with amazing merchandise to pick!

Rating Reviews
Excellent 362
Very good 75
Average 18
Poor 3
Terrible 6