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Distillery in Focus:          Littlemill
Region: Lowlands
Name: Littlemill
Status: Demolished
Website: N/A
Telephone: N/A
E-Mail: N/A
Address: 126 Dumbarton Road, Bowling G60 5BG
Visitor centre: N/A
Owner: N/A
Established in 1772
Stills: 1 wash and 1 spirit still
Percentage single malt: N.A.
Casks used for maturation: Refill bourbon cask, with some rare sherry casks.
Contribute(d) to the following blends: House of Stuart, Royal Escort.

Regular Bottling:

The last regular bottlings was a Littlemill 12 YO 40%

For the tasted whiskies, click here


From left to right: The 8 YO Littlemill (until early 2000s) and the final edition of the 12 YO.

History of the Littlemill distillery

Littlemill distillery was established in 1772 on the location of a brewery founded in the 1750s. Until its destruction, it was considered as the oldest working distillery of Scotland. The license for distilling was obtained in 1823. The distillery was located in the Lowlands, while its water source was in the Highlands.
During its long history, the change of owner was very frequent. Between 1825 and 1839, Jane McGregor, one of the first, if not the first woman distillers, owned the distillery.

The distillery was rebuilt in 1875.

In 1931, after 18 months of closure, an American, Duncan Thomas acquired the distillery and experimented new techniques. He switched the production from a triple to double distillation, installed a new type of Saladin boxes for malting with a double ventilation tower over a single kiln fire (in 1959-60) and created a new type of stills, made of copper, with the outer neck made of aluminium, with rectifying columns instead of swan necks. Duncan Thomas was living on site in the excise house.

In 1971 the distillery passed in the hands of Barton brands and stopped producing the unpeated Dunglas and Dumbuck heavily peated malt whisky. Barton was bought by Amalgated Distillery in 1982. Production stopped in 1984 and resumed when it was bought by Gibson international in 1989 and closed in 1994 after bankruptcy. Loch Lomond Distillery Ltd purchased it that year.

Operation ceased in 1994. Some warehouses were destroyed in 1995 and the distillery was dismantled in 1996-97. Most of the remaining buildings burned on the 4th September 2006. The distillery was completely destroyed on May 2006.

Of note, the last images of the distillery can be watched here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7CPkAOplyMY

Source: The Scotch Whisky Distilleries by Misako Udo, The Making of Scotch whisky by John R. Hume & Michael S. Moss and The Scotch whisky industry record by H. Charles Craig,
Patrick Brossard © 11 March 2014

Tasted whiskies (43):

Official/original bottlings (OB)  
Age  
Littlemill 8 YO, OB, 40%. B: 1990s Rating: 10/20
Littlemill 12 YO, OB, 40%, B: 2006 Rating: 08/20
Littlemill 12 YO, OB, 40%, B: 2011 Rating: 12/20
Littlemill 1st edition, 21 YO, OB, 46%, 3000 b. Rating: 15/20
Littlemill 2nd edition, 21 YO, OB, 46%, 4000 b. Rating: 15/20
Littlemill 27 YO Private Cellar, OB, 51.9%, B:2017, 500 b. Rating: 17/20

 

Independent bottlings (IB) and undisclosed "Littlemill"  
   
Acla Selection  
Littlemill 1989, 24 YO, Acla Selection / The Whisky Agency, 52.9%, Rating: 16/20
   
Alambic Classique  
Littlemill 1992 Spanish Brandy Barrel finish, Alambic Classique, 53.6%, B:2013, c. 13307 Rating: 09/20
   
Anam na h-Alba  
Littlemill 1989, 24 YO, Anam na h-Alba, 48.5% Rating: 16/20
   
Berry Bros & Rudd  
Littlemill 1990, 21 YO, BBR, 46%, B: 2012, c. 18 Rating: 16/20
Littlemill 1992, 20 YO, BBR, 54.9%, B: 2013, c. 10 Rating: 14/20
Littlemill 1992 For Charles Hofer Switzerland, 23 YO, BBR, 57%, B:2015, c. 506 Rating: 15/20
   
Cadenhead's  
Littlemill 21 YO, Cadenhead’s, 55.2%, B: 2012 Rating: 12/20
Littlemill 1990, 24 YO, Cadenhead’s, 53.7%, B:2015 Rating: 14/20
Littlemill 1991 175th Anniversary, 26 YO, Cadenhead’s, 52.6%, B:2017, 182 b. Rating: 16/20
   
Chieftains  
Littlemill 1992,22 YO, Chieftains, 50.7%, B: 2014. Rating: 13/20
   
Cooper's Choice  
Littlemill 1984 For La Boutique du Chemin, Cooper’s Choice, 48.5%, B:2016, c. 3901, 260 b. Rating: 16/20
Littlemill 1984, Cooper’s Choice, 49%, B:2015, c. 3904, 270 b. Rating: 14/20
   
Douglas Laing  
Littlemill 1965 OMC, 36 YO, 47.4%, D. Laing Rating: 16/20
Littlemill 1988 Director’s cut, D, Laing, 56.2%, B: 2014, c.10349. Rating: 17/20
Littlemill 1991 OMC, 19 YO, D. Laing, 50%, B: 2010, c.6552, 340 b. Rating: 14/20
   
Eiling Lim  
Littlemill 1990, 24 YO, Eiling Lim, 46.8%, B:2014, 113 b. Rating: 16/20
   
First Cask  
Littlemill 1990, 20 YO, First Cask, 54.2%, c. 726, 225 b. Rating: 09/20
   
First Editions  
Littlemill 1988, 24 YO, The First Editions, 55.8%, B:2013, 330 b. Rating: 14/20
Littlemill 1991, 21 YO, The First Editions, 47.7%, B: 2012 Rating: 14/20
   
Gordon & MacPhail  
Littlemill 1991 Rare Old, Gordon & MacPhail, 45.5%, B:2015, RO/15/04 Rating: 143/20
   
Hammerschmiede  
Littlemill 1992, Hammerschmiede, 51.6%, B: 2012, c. 40 Rating: 13/20
   
Hart Brothers  
Littlemill 1988, 20 YO, Hart Brothers, 46%, B: 2008 Rating: 14/20
Littlemill 1988 Sherry Butt, 26 YO, Hart Brothers, 52.5%, B: 2015 Rating: 17/20
Littlemill 1992 First Fill Sherry, 21 YO, Hart Brothers, 46%, B: 2013. Rating: 17/20
   
Jack Wiebers World of Whisky  
Littlemill 1992 Old Passenger Line, 22 YO, Jack Wiebers, 49.1%, B:2014, 252 b. Rating: 15/20
   
Lady of the Glen  
Littlemill 1992, Lady of the Glen, 53.6%, B: 2014 Rating: 15/20
   
Liquid Library  
Littlemill 1989, 24 YO, Liquid Library, 43.7%, B: 2014, 199 b. Rating: 13/20
   
Liquid Sun  
Littlemill 1988, 25 YO, Liquid Sun, 49.3%, B: 2014. Rating: 15/20
   
Maltbarn  
Littlemill 1992, 20 YO, Maltbarn, 52.4%, B: 2012 Rating: 13/20
Littlemill 1990, 24 YO, Maltbarn, 50.6%, B: 2014 Rating: 16/20
   
Monnier  
Littlemill 1988 Kreuzritter, Monnier, 47.7%, B:2015, c. 1067. Rating: 13/20
Littlemill 1990 Fighting Fish, 24 YO, Monnier, 52.3%, B:2015 Rating: 14/20
   
Pearls of Scotland  
Littlemill 1988, 27 YO, Pearls of Scotland, 54.2%, B:2015, c. 130, 195 b. Rating: 15/20
   
Perfect Dram, The  
Littlemill 1989 Whiskyschiff 2012, 23 YO, The Perfect Dram,  52.70%, B: 2012, 202 b. Rating: 15/20
   
Scott's Selection  

Littlemill 1984, 20 YO, Scott’s selection, 61.3%, B: 2004.

Rating: 14/20
Littlemill 1990, Scott's selection, 57%, B:2007 Rating: 10/20
   
Signatory Vintage  
Littlemill 1977, 23 YO, Signatory, 49.0%, B:2001, c. 1151, 224 b. Rating: 07/20
   
Sliver Seal/ Sestante  
Littlemill 1989, Silver Seal and The Whisky Agency, 49.8%, B: 2011 Rating: 15/20
Littlemill 1990,19 YO, Silver Seal (Sestante), 57%, B: 2009. Rating: 17/20
   
Thoshop  
Littlemill 1989, Thoshop, 55.4%, B: 2011 Rating: 16/20