Tuesday, July 05, 2016


A multi-million-pound project to create a distillery and visitor centre in the spiritual home of Scotch whisky, for the first time in over 500 years, has begun.

The brainchild of Drew McKenzie-Smith and his wife Helen, Lindores Abbey Distillery will incorporate ancient distilling techniques and ingredients to produce a unique Scotch whisky, which will be available by 2023.

Construction on new multi-million pound Lindores Distillery begins

Lindores Abbey is known as the ‘spiritual home’ of Scotch whisky thanks to Friar John Cor, who paid duty on malt in 1494 in order to make ‘aqua vitae’ for the king, an act that was recorded in the Exchequer roll and is the earliest written evidence of whisky distillation in Scotland.

The distillery is being built by converting and enlarging the original abbey steading. The current steading is made from original abbey stone and is over two hundred years old. Wood and stone from the surrounding area will be used as much as possible to carry on the tradition of local sustainability and to minimise the carbon footprint of the build.

Commenting on the news, Drew McKenzie-Smith, Founder of Lindores Abbey Distillery said: “To us, the history of Lindores Abbey is just as important as the plans we have to create a distillery. If it wasn’t for the expertise of the Tironesian monks who came to Scotland in those dark and frightening medieval times we may not have the advanced industry we do today.”

He continued by saying: “Building a distillery on this site will bring the spiritual home of Scotch whisky back to life and we will initially produce and market an aqua vitae spirit. We’re working closely with various teams to ensure we respect and maintain the historic integrity of this unique site. We believe a whisky distillery and visitor centre will help drive tourists to this part of Fife and, in turn, have a positive impact on the local economy.”

Forsyths of Rothes have been appointed as fabricators with the building specifically designed by Organic Architects of Helensburgh. International whisky expert Dr. Jim Swan will contribute his skills and expertise to create a world-class whisky which Drew believes will appeal to a global market.

Posted by Steve Rush