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Tamdhu Distillery Picture: Tamdhu
Click to see large map in separate window   Location: Knockando, Morayshire IV35 7RR
Roads: On the B9102 between Archiestown and Knockando
Hours: Not open to visitors

Text from The Whisky Trails, Copyright © Gordon Brown 1993:

Tamdhu has a couple of unique nuggets of originality that make it a particularly pleasing visit. It is the sole remaining distillery in Scotland with Saladin Box maltings which are still in use, and the reception centre is the former Victorian railway station of Knockando.

Tamdhu was built in 1896 by a consortium of whisky blenders but it was sold on just three years later to Highland Distilleries who have owned it ever since. Tamdhu was silent from 1927 until 1947 before going on to be expanded and rebuilt in the 1970s. The distillery has buildings from several different periods.

The floor maltings were replaced with a Saladin Box system in 1951 which continues to supply the entire malt requirement of the distillery. The germinating barley is shifted by mechanical turners which travel back and forth at regular intervals along the 10 shallow troughs in which it is lies. Air is blown through holes in the trough-floors to control the temperature of the barley.

The drying kiln is modern with hot air blown through the malt, cutting the customary time of the operation by half. This air is pre-heated by waste hot water coming from the condensers on the stills. Locally collected peat is burned in a small furnace and the smoke intermingled with the drying air in the kiln to add the degree of smokiness appropriate to Tamdhu spirit. There was a single pair of stills until 1972 when a second pair was added. In 1975 the distillery was largely rebuilt, including the installation of a third pair of stills. The distillery is located around a spring which furnishes the production water.


The Whisky
Text from The Whisky Trails, Copyright © Gordon Brown 1993:

Picture: Airphoto of Tamdhu
Tamdhu distillery is set in dense woodlands. The old railway station became the visitor centre, which is now closed.
Tamdhu is light, smoky and well balanced, developing a ripeness of biscuity flavour that is surprisingly lengthy. Some toasty sweetness and tiny spice. The whisky is now marketed as a "no age statement" single malt. It is used in the make-up of the Famous Grouse blend.

Source of water
Tamdhu spring