Bowmore Distillery

Islay, United Kingdom

Bowmore distillery produces scotch whisky on the isle of Islay. It was established in 1779 by a local merchant, John P. Simpson, before passing into the ownership of the Mutter family, a family of German descent. James Mutter, head of the family, also had farming interests and was Vice Consul representing the Ottoman Empire, Portugal, and Brazil through their Glasgow consulates. There are no records that pinpoint the date Mutter acquired the distillery from Simpson. Mutter would introduce a number of innovative processes to the distillery during his tenure and even had a small iron steam ship built to import barley and coal from the mainland and to export the whisky to Glasgow.

The distillery was bought from the Mutter family in 1925 by J.B. Sheriff & Co. and remained under their ownership until being purchased by Inverness-based William Grigor & Son, Ltd. in 1950. During the World Wars the Bowmore Distillery halted production, and hosted the RAF Coastal Command for much of World War II, Coastal Command operated flying boats from Loch Indaal on Anti-submarine warfare missions.

Bowmore Distillery sources as much barley as possible from on the island of Islay, but there are insufficient quantities produced to satisfy the distillery's demand, so barley is also imported from the mainland. The distillery retains a traditional floor malting, but this also lacks sufficient capacity; the barley imported from the mainland is normally already malted. The distillery has an annual capacity of 2,000,000 litres, with fermentation undertaken in traditional wooden washbacks before the liquid is passed through two wash stills and then through two spirit stills.

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Founded: 1779
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Rating

4.7/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Cookie Suarez (19 months ago)
We went for the tasting only. Our host was very knowledgeable and friendly, even though I did not take part, I really my time learning. It was rather intimate because of low season, and i really do prefer it that way. We enjoyed out time there and will be returning!
Manu O'Kay (19 months ago)
Very beautiful distillery and very friendly staff, too. A place to come back to. Took that picture in Bowmore's tasting room.
Flickr the Nuri (2 years ago)
Lovely guide for our tour. Nice tasting by the seaside window.
Amanda Pretty (2 years ago)
The sleeper hit of Islay. Beautiful views from the tasting room, lovely hosts. Fantastic whisky!
Trina Madden (2 years ago)
Wonderful experience at Bowmore. The tour was impressive and very hands on! I felt immersed in all the smells and flavours while learning a huge amount about the whiskey process. Super friendly people that will definitely bring me back again!
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