Whisky from a distillery that shut three years ago as the economy flattened Scotch sales rolls into Waitrose under new ownership this week.
Ian Macleod Distillers, which bought the Tamdhu Distillery from Famous Grouse owner Edrington Group in 2011, is now in talks with other multiples about listings for Single Malt Tamdhu 10 Year Old.
The brand was relaunched at an event at the distillery hosted by TV drinks pundit Olly Smith (pictured) on Friday. The distillery was originally opened in 1897 by a consortium of distillers including William Grant.
The launch of the Tamdhu brand reflects the growth Ian Macleod has seen in sales of premium, single malt whisky following the company’s purchase of the Glengoyne distillery and single malt brand in 2003.
“We are investing heavily in this. It’s indescribably exciting”
Leonard Russell, Ian Macleod
“Traditionally we were blenders but now single malt is taking off really rather well,” said Ian Macleod’s managing director Leonard Russell. “Edrington have Grouse and Macallan and Tamdhu didn’t fit very well in to their portfolio, so they didn’t push it. We are investing heavily in this. It’s indescribably exciting.”
Currently around 90% of the three million litres of Scotch produced at the distillery every year is sold for blending, but as the brand takes off Ian Macleod expects the proportion sold as single malt to increase.
While exports of Scotch whisky are booming – government figures show exports hit £4.3bn in 2012, up 87% since 2002 – Ian Macleod says the UK is just as important a market for Tamdhu as overseas.
“We’re committed to growing the brand within the UK and internationally, and are confident it will prove popular with whisky enthusiasts and connoisseurs alike,” said Ian Macleod’s commercial director Neil Boyd.