Rosebank Distillery to be resurrected by Ian Macleod

Following the announcement on the recreation of Brora and Port Ellen by Diageo yesterday, Ian Macleod, owners of Glengoyne and Tamdhu, announced today that they will be bringing Falkirk’s Rosebank distillery back to life.

Here is the official Press release:

Ian Macleod Distillers has today revealed plans to resurrect one of Scotland’s most cherished distilleries. “Rosebank is one of the most respected and sought after single malts in the world,” declared MD Leonard Russell. “As such, this is an extraordinarily exciting project for us.  To bring back to life an iconic distillery and quintessential Lowland single malt is truly a once in a lifetime opportunity.”


In its home town of Falkirk, on the banks of the Forth & Clyde Canal, Rosebank has been dubbed ‘the King of the Lowlands’ and the late whisky writer, Michael Jackson had no doubt that it was one of the ‘greats’. He described its demise as “a grievous loss”, while fellow critic, Gavin D Smith, wrote of the region’s whiskies having: “subtle charm, and none is more charming than the elegant, floral, aromatic Rosebank produced by a triple distillation process in the traditional Lowland manner.”


All this will be preserved, as Leonard Russell explained: “The distillery has a very special place in Scotland’s whisky heritage and we are committed to ensuring this is the case. We will produce Rosebank Lowland single malt in exactly the same way as it is known, using the famous triple distillation and worm tub condensers. This way we ensure the revival of its classic style and taste.”


“Our investment goes way beyond production,” he continued. “We are looking to develop a Rosebank Visitor Centre to help tell the story of this remarkable whisky – as well as safeguard the atmospheric Canal side Bond and its important heritage.”


Ian Macleod Distillers has entered into a binding agreement with Scottish Canals to purchase the site and has separately acquired the Rosebank trademark.  The company is proud to be investing in Falkirk by adding to the town’s flourishing economy and tourism scene.


But perhaps most exciting for whisky lovers as they wait for the reborn Rosebank to mature, is the acquisition of some precious existing casks. “Over the coming months we will carefully review Rosebank’s rare stocks with a view to releasing some truly scarce and extraordinary whiskies,” said Leonard Russell.  “We have no doubt that demand for these releases will be exceptionally high so we already have plans in place to make sure collectors and Rosebank lovers can keep up to date.”


With this in mind, all the latest developments will be revealed on a new, dedicated website where those who sign up will be the first to hear about the release of the rare and collectable bottlings of Rosebank Lowland Single Malt.


Rosebank Distillery is located beside the Forth & Clyde Canal at Camelon, on the outskirts of the town of Falkirk, between Edinburgh and Glasgow. Its history on the present site begins in 1840, when James Rankine acquired the maltings of the Camelon Distillery, which were on the opposite side of the canal to the main distillery.

By 1886 Rosebank was operating on both sides of the canal with the Camelon building producing malt which was then transferred over a swing bridge to the distillery building. In the 20th century it was considered one of, if not the, premier Lowland malts. In 1993, owners, United Distillers, mothballed the building. Rosebank’s single malts are now some of the most sought-after in the connoisseur’s and collectors’ market.

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