Rosebank revival is a step closer

IAN Macleod Distillers is a step closer to reopening the famous Rosebank Distillery after installing three new stills at the facility.

Ian Macleod bought Rosebank in 2017 and has been refurbishing the facility, which has been shut since the early 1990s. Its ambition is to recreate the original style of the distillery’s whisky as closely as possible.

To that end, the company acquired the blueprints for the original stills, before tasking still-maker Forsyths with creating a new set of stills to the exact dimensions of the originals.

The Falkirk distillery is said to have achieved its signature style through a combination of triple distillation and worm tub condensing.

“Triple distillation is a very important part in the somewhat nonsensical jigsaw puzzle that is the Rosebank spirit,” said distillery manager Malcolm Rennie.

“It generally enhances the lighter, smoother and fruitier components of a spirit, and so is a vital first step in the ‘new’ Rosebank journey.”

Forsyths managing director, Richard Forsyth, said: “To this day, we still use our forefathers’ hand hammering techniques to shape copper into carefully crafted pot stills. Of course, we’ve tried to mechanize it as much as possible, but the finishes we produce are still very much hands-on, and it’s a very physical job.”

The restoration of the distillery is due to be completed by the end of the summer.