The Dalmore is one of the most revered Scotch whisky producers. The Highland distillery, located on the shores of the Cromarty Firth north of Inverness, has been producing malt whisky since it was founded by entrepreneur Sir Alexander Matheson in 1839.
The Dalmore – from the Gaelic for “large field” – was owned by the MacKenzie family for almost 100 years. The iconic 12-pointed stag on the coat of arms was awarded to the MacKenzie clan after they saved King Alexander III from certain death when a Highland buck charged at him.
From 1839, The Dalmore distillery was passed down through three generations until Glasgow-based Whyte & MacKay took control in 1969. Over the years, The Dalmore has partnered with some of the finest bodegas and wineries, including its long-standing partnership with the iconic Sherry producer González Byass.
Until 2002, The Dalmore had mainly contributed to Whyte & Mackay blended malts and not been widely available beyond a 12-year-old. Whyte & Mackay started to increase The Dalmore single malt range, however, and it broke records the same year when a 62-year-old bottling sold for more than £25,000 at auction.
In 2011, The Damore opened the doors to its visitor centre that had undergone a £1m renovation. Eight years later the centre underwent another considerable revamp and expansion to host its international fan base.
In 2014, Whyte & Mackay was sold by United Distillers for £430 million to Philippines-based brandy producer Emperador. Throughout the many changes in ownership, Master Distiller Richard Paterson OBE has remained a constant. Paterson joined the company in 1970 at 26 years of age. The Glaswegian celebrated his 50th year in the industry with some exceptional bottlings in 2017.
The Paterson Collection – a one-off series of 12 single malts – sold for £1m four years after launch. Three years later, The Dalmore released 51 decanters of 51-year-old whisky at £55,000 per bottle. Matured in ex-Bourbon casks, the single malt was split between Port Colheita 1938 casks, Matusalem Sherry and first-fill Bourbon casks before being combined in specially selected Bourbon barrels.