is Gaelic for the ‘valley of the deer’. The valley in
question surrounds the river Fiddich in the Spey region.
The founder of Glenfiddich was William Grant. After
having worked for almost 20 years at Mortlach Distillery
William Grant decided to go into business on his own. In
1886 he therefore quit his job as Manager of Mortlach
and invested £120 in used equipment which he bought from
the Cardow Distillery. William and his family virtually
built the distillery with their own hands. Due to both
good timing and luck William managed to amass quite a
bit of capital, and in 1892 he was able to build a new
distillery close by. The new distillery was named
The Grant family has made several clever business
decisions during the years that at least partly explain
why Glenfiddich now is the biggest selling single malt
brand in the world. For example, Glenfiddich did not cut
back production during the Prohibition. Instead they
increased it to build up their supplies since they
believed the US market would explode as the prohibition
was lifted. History tells us they were right. There were
only four other distilleries apart from Glenfiddich and
Balvenie that kept running in Scotland at the time.
Another example of their good business sense is that
Glenfiddich was among the first distilleries to sell
their single malt in England and in Wales. They also
established offices early in key cities throughout
Britain in order to boost their sales. In fact, an
office was opened in Glasgow already in the beginning of
the 20th century.
The Grant family has also been very successful with
their marketing strategies. One example is the
triangular bottle which was launched in 1957. Today
Glenfiddich is the largest single malt brand in the
world. Glenfiddich is also one of very few Scottish
distilleries that still remain in the hands of the
descendants of its founders.
Largest single malt brand in the world!
Since Glenfiddich have
released so many bottlings it is difficult to record any
common characteristics. However, most bottlings can be
described as soft and a bit sweet. The younger bottlings
also all have a slight hint of pears.
use water from the spring Robbie Dhu. They buy
their malt lightly peated from several suppliers. The
two mash tuns are made from copper and hold 10 tons
each. Their 24 wooden washbacks are all made from
pinewood. The distillery has an impressive number of 30
pot stills. The Wash stills are lantern-shaped and the
spirit stills are all of the Boiling Ball-model. All
spirit stills are directly heated with coal.
Bourbon casks are most commonly used for storage and
maturation, although sherry casks are also used
frequently. The filled casks are stored on the grounds
in traditional dunnage warehouses. At any given time
there are approximately 250 000 casks in maturation at
Glenfiddich. The bottling is done on-site.
The Glenfiddich Distillery
Phone: +44 (0) 1340
820 373 Fax: +44 (0)
Open all year round Monday-Friday and Saturday between
9.30am-4.30pm. Between Easter-October it is also open
Sundays 9.30am-4.30pm. Admission is free. A movie is
shown 20 minutes before the regular daily tours.
Glenfiddich have many visitors and usually keep the size
of the groups around 10 people depending on the
nationality of the visitors. Tours which include the
complete production process are finished with a tasting
of the Glenfiddich’s 12 year-old. The on-site gift shop
has a wide selection.
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