Tobermory distillery, located on Scotland’s Isle of Mull, will be closing down for up to two years starting on March 31st. Owner Distell Group Ltd. has plans refurbish the facility which require shutting it down. The visitor center, however, will remain open to guests and will host tours. Distell noted in a statement that staff jobs “will be protected as far as possible.”
Tobermory distillery produces both Tobermory and Ledaig single malt whiskies (Ledaig is highly peated, while Tobermory is not). During the two-year renovation period, Ledaig 10 year old and 18 year old will continue to be available, with Tobermory 10 year old limited to visitor center sales. (Tobermory 15 year old has been discontinued since October 2016 due to water shortages on Mull in recent years.) Both brands will release limited-edition expressions as well.
In addition to the distillery overhaul, Distell Group has hired a general manager for malts, a new position. The person filling that role will be announced in the coming weeks.
While it’s always frustrating when favorite whiskies disappear due to stock shortages or temporary distillery closures like this one, the outlook for Tobermory and Ledaig isn’t altogether bleak. A two-year renovation may seem like a long time, but in the life of a distillery that’s already nearly 230 years old, it’s a drop in the bucket—and a solid investment in the future of the brand.