Brora 1982 – closed distillery

Highland Single Malt
Sherry cask #876 & 46.1% alc.vol
Distilled 13 May 1982
Bottled 28 July 2014

Lombard Tasting

Coastal influences abound on the fragrant light, smoky nose. Cracked black pepper. Complex palate develops to a big whisky. Brooding peat. Peppery. Long finish with hints of smoke, pine needle and spice.

Whisky Magazine EDITOR'S CHOICE Issue 134

Review by Chris – 9.2 POINTS
Nose: Tart citrus and lovely sawdusty American oak. Lusciously honeyed with hints of gooseberry, lime and soft spice. Stunning depth.
Palate: Crisp, mineral with white fruit, barley, lime and hyacinth. Lusciously honeyed and creamy with sawdusty, mature oak. Superbly balanced.
Finish: Long, citric and mouth-wateringly mineral with subtle Cognac-esque dried fruit notes.
Comments: A classic American oak aged, mature Highland Malt.

Review by Joel – 9.6 POINTS
Nose: Wow, the smoke on this sits perfectly with the summer fruits and stone fruits. Apple develops on the nose, wrapped in fantastically velvety smoke. Age, certainly. Tiredness, none.
Palate: Sweetness on the front of the palate, oak spices in the middle and a waft of smoke at the back. This is like pre-war mainland whisky making.
Finish: Perfectly dry and smoky. A day longer in the cask, and it'd be a different story.
Comments: Just fantastic. Smoke, heather and fruits combine to produce pre-war style product.

Review by Dave Broom ( – 9.0 POINTS
Nose: A big and robustly elegant Brora, this is like pulling on a new woollen jumper for the first time. There's some grassiness and the oiliness of maturity (and the distillery), yet it still has some lemon leaf lift and the sweet note of turned, humid earth. A fascinating and classic Brora nose.
Palate: Slightly startling on opening, with a saline quality that then softens into those oils, more orange peel, some black olive, dark fruits. The tannins are fine-grained. Things move slowly and there's just an impression of slight tiredness.
Finish: Oils, fruit, then ash.
Comments: A whisky which is at that point when all of the giddy prettiness of youth is beginning to decay and become infinitely more interesting.

Distillery Information

Located on the far North East coast of Scotland in the village of Brora. The distillery was founded 1819 and originally named Clynelish – this was the status quo until the distillery was re-named Brora in 1969. Re-naming took place as the Clynelish name was adopted to a new distillery built 1967. Brora was named after the village and went on to initially produce spirit from a very highly peated barley to produce an Islay type of whisky for blending. Due to its demand for blending, there was no distillery bottling. It sourced its water from the Clynmilton Burn and had one pair of stills with traditional floor maltings and kiln. Brora was regarded as one of the most powerful Highland malts with a style more akin to Islay –it was rich, spicy, salty and earthy. Surprisingly clean. The Brora distillery closed 1983 and is sadly missed.