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WhiskyFest San Francisco Speaker Willie Tait

willie_taitWillie Tait
Master Distiller

Only 7 miles wide and 30 long, and with a population of just 200, it is unsurprising that the magical Isle of Jura has only one distillery – the producer of the award-winning single malt whisky.

Willie Tait’s involvement with Jura begins in January 1975 when he took on the role as Tunroom Man at the remote Hebridean distillery nestled just off the west coast of Scotland. Shortly thereafter he to moved on to the role of Mash / Stillman.

In the summer of 1979 Willie took of the position of Assistant Distillery Manager, a post he enjoyed until he was made Manager 6 years later. By 1993, he found himself with a new challenge – Distillery Manager of both Jura and also Bruichladdich, on the neighbouring Island of Islay.

After over two decades, and having crafted some truly special single malts, Willie left his adopted island home of Jura in1999 and returned to the mainland to begin his next adventure.

Whisky distilling was well-and-truly in his blood and his next appointment took him to the north east of Scotland to the village of Fettercairn, where he became Manager of three Malt distilleries – Fettercairn, Tamnavulin and Tullibardine.

By September 2003 Willie found himself embarking on another new journey when he was appointed as global Master Distiller Brand Ambassador of the Isle of Jura Single Malt Whisky. This role has had Willie travelling the globe delighting people with magical stories of island life and of course allowing them to sample some of the rarest and most delicate single malts Jura has to offer.

After so many years service to the Scotch Whisky industry, his vast experience is widely acknowledged by his peers.