Slàinte Torabhaig Distillery – bringing the ‘Water of Life’ to Sleat

posted in: Mhor Skye Musings | 1
A picture story of an informal visit to the Torabhaig distillery arranged by the South Skye Camera Club.  Though the distillery is yet to open to the public it started operation in January and whilst there is still being work undertaken on some of the outer buildings and the grounds, inside they are already producing the spirit that will surely take pride of place on many a side board in the years to come.  Click on any image to see a larger version.

Located on the site of an old steading at Knock, the distillery’s location is simply superb with a wonderful vista overlooking the Sound of Sleat to the main land.
As much care has gone in to the external renovations and the ground landscaping work as is obviously going in to the distilling.  New stone walling dovetails with the moss covered original walls.  Like the whisky the new wall will only improve with age!
Still not finished the dry walls incorporate some lovely detail.
The water wheel is fully working and is fed from the cooling pond, the corner of which can be seen in the first picture.  The water that leaves the distillery has to be cooled to ensure no harm is caused to the environment when it is returned to the burn.  The clean pointing shows some of the extensive renovation that was done to the original buildings.
The decking is not finished yet but this is the view that will greet the visitors as they walk around the edge of the distillery to the welcoming centre.  The remains of Knock Castle can just be made out on the small promontory just beyond the leading line of the hand rail.  The platform looks down over the burn and the path to Knock bay.
And so the business end of the distillery.  The hoppers for the malt, like most of the equipment stands proud over two floors.
Through the down tube the malt is fed in to the masher where the process of making the whisky begins.
From the masher to the wash back vats which are crammed in to the original steading building……
and like the malt hoppers take up two floors.
With the inspection hatch open the aroma from inside the wash backs suggests that the future whisky is in good hands.
And from the wash backs to one of the two copper stills – colour coded Red and Blue.
Having been boiled in the stills the spirit is cooled before beginning its long ageing process and being ready to be sold.
And whilst we may have to wait before we sample the whisky, the waste malt  from the mashing is taken by trailer up to Donald John’s cattle.  High in protein, low in starch he is going to have some serious fit cattle on the hillside above Torabhaig.  My thanks go to Hamish Fraser for taking the time to show the members of South Skye Camera Club around.  It may have been my first visit to Troabhaig Distillery but it certainly will not be my last.  Until next time………………….

One Response

  1. Kate
    | Reply

    My mouth is watering! Great that Sleat is getting its own distillery at last.

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