This evening I am presenting some images from a recent visit to Glenkinchie Distillery, south of Edinburgh.

The production of Scotch whisky is a complex process which entails:

  • Converting the starch in barley to soluble sugars by a process called malting.
  • After malting, the malt is ready for distilling via a crushing which converts the malt into a rough flour of grist.
  • Then fermenting is undertaken by placing the grist in circular mash tuns and covering same with water warmed to about 64 degrees centigrade. The resultant liquid is called wort which is cooled, pumped into washbacks and to which yeast is added. This causes fermentation by converting the sugar into alcohol with the final liquid known as wash.
  • The next stage is distillation via boiling the wash and condensing same into a concentrate known as low wines. The low wines are distilled for a second time and from this a liquid is produced which will become whisky.
  • The final process is maturation entailing maturing the liquid in oak casks for a minimum of three years.

Tour guide in full flow

Whisky safe in the distilling process

Whisky stills. These are made from beaten copper and are onion shaped. No two stills are the same.

Mash tuns which produce wort

The mill for crushing

The following three images are scale models covering various aspects of the distilling process.

Overall, a good tour which provided a fascinating insight into the manufacture of Scotch whisky.

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