The spirits of “ghost” distilleries are supposed to haunt you.
And it’s safe to say that Brora – as one of my five holy grail scotches – haunts me a bit.
Consider the half-drunk 35-year-old Brora bottle from 1977 in my kitchen counter, which I plan to last another 35 years – mainly because replacing it would bring me back to less $ 2,200. (Believe me, if money weren’t an issue, I’d have rows and rows of Broras in my collection – and I’d have a whiskey cellar that looked like Golden Promise in Paris.)
And while Brora, the legendary Islay distillery, went out of business more than three decades ago in 1983, Diageo announced in 2017 that it was spending $ 45 million to bring it back (and its cousin from Islay Port Ellen) to life – much to the delight of the multitudes.
So, before the distillery reopens in mid-May, reborn Brora has announced that it will be releasing three limited edition single malts: stellar whiskeys aged 38 to 48. And get this, the three 500 milliliter Brora Triptych bottlings have to be bought together as a set – for £ 30,000 (or $ 42,000). It will also only be available in the Distillery, Highly Specialty Spirits Retailers and at brora.com.
“My father was an ‘elder’ at the distillery and I grew up in the village with the top of the distillery steeple visible from our kitchen window. In the years since Brora closed, I remember my father showing me the old barrel registers and records from those last barrel distilled in 1983 and asking if Brora would ever come back, ”said the master still. of Brora, Steward Bowman, in an official statement. “It fills me with great pride that thirty-eight years after the doors of Brora have closed, other kegs will now be filled, and we will be able to welcome people again to this special place. We are committed to doing justice to the Brora of yesteryear and look forward to welcoming visitors to our restored home as soon as possible. In the Brora Triptych, we aimed to celebrate the great styles of whiskey from the past for which Brora is known.
The three-bottle collection is intended to pay homage to the legendary distillery – each expression representing Brora’s most famous styles. “These are some of our very last precious relics of a Brora from a bygone age. Each represents a moment in time at the distillery and to taste these superb whiskeys is to be part of a special moment in history, ”says master blender, Dr. Craig Wilson. “When selecting casks for these rare bottlings, we wanted to celebrate these distinct characteristics that define Brora, and those we seek to uphold as we enter a new chapter in its history.
So for those with tens of thousands, act fast. Only 300 sets will be available – and only in conjunction with the reopening of the distillery. Another advantage: those who manage to get their hands on one of the triptychs will be personally invited by Bowman to discover Brora’s new installation.
Here is: the Brora triptych collection
Brora’s Elusive Legacy: 48 years old at 42.8% ABV (1972)
This 48 Year Old is the oldest public release from the distillery. It represents an exceptional style from the 1972 casks – and is a distinctly earthy expression. It is considered a collector’s item, given that few products were produced throughout the life of the distillery.
Brora Age of Peat: 43 years old at 48.6% ABV (1977)
This particular 43 year old is a very peaty and conveys the ubiquitous ‘classic Brora style’ of the 1970s. It is also one of the few specimens of a highly peated Highland whiskey. These 1977 casks have matured dramatically and the whiskey is as layered and intense as any Islay whiskey lover would like.
Brora Timeless Original: 38 years old at 47.6% ABV (1982)
The youngest of the trio is a 38-year-old 1982 and displays the kind of polish and stickiness that made Brora famous. It’s the “modern version” that many seem to think of as a bit more “refined,” which essentially means less peat.