North Point launches Scotland’s newest Highland single malt whisky 

North Point Distillery founders Alex MacDonald (left), Struan Mackie (right), flanking head distiller Greg Benson and brand ambassador Laura Pearce, in Forss, West Caithness (Pic: Angus Mackay)

Award-winning craft spirit producer North Point Distillery, sited near Thurso on Scotland’s north coast, has unveiled its new Highland single malt whisky brand, Dalclagie.

Located at the Forss Business and Energy Park, a former U.S Navy base, North Point Distillery has already received international acclaim for its range of small-batch expressions of Highland rum and gin, winning Gold Medals at the International Wine and Spirits Competition, the World Gin Awards and the World Rum Awards, where the distillery was named Craft Producer of the Year. It also won London Dry Gin of the year at the Scottish Gin Awards earlier this month.

So hopes are high for North Point’s first foray into single malt, which is being produced on the Caithness coast ‘where the haar from the sea meets the mist from the land’ and is described as a spirit shaped by the place and the people who live and work in that remote spot.

The local Dalclagie Mill and croft provided inspiration for the brand. Head distiller Greg Benson described the spirit as ‘truly unique’, saying: “Dalclagie is special. We have used the very best heritage barley varieties available to us, conducting extra-long fermentations using Kveik yeast, and spirit cuts that are dictated by taste, not efficiency.

“With notes of tropical fruit, tinned peaches, and pineapple; a full-bodied texture; and a croissant sweetness, our New Make Spirit is delicious before it even touches the wood,” said Benson. “Long term, our maturation style will be influenced by hand-selected bourbon barrels, as well as Palo Cortado casks from Spain.”

Launching the brand, co-founder Struan Mackie said: “We’re incredibly proud to launch Dalclagie Single Malt Whisky. Having received our permissions over two years ago, the team began work on our Single Malt expression, ensuring our ethos for quality and taste was at the core of everything we do. To finally announce the Dalclagie brand and our cask programme is a proud moment for the distillery.”

His fellow co-founder Alex MacDonald, said: “Our New Make and the cask samples from our last two years of production are yielding a truly fantastic tasting spirit, complex and flavourful.

“I believe that Dalclagie will be one of the most sought-after Highland Single Malt Whiskies on the market, and we expect our Cask Programme to be massively oversubscribed.”

MacDonald added: “Caithness is fast becoming a hotbed of Scotch Whisky production, a County making its mark globally, and we are proud to add to the story.”

The distillery will produce 200 casks of Dalclagie New Make every year, and its Cask Programme is now open.