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Only from the Distillery

A Royal Lochnagar experience to savour

Neighbouring Balmoral Castle, Royal Lochnagar is the perfect place to discover how Scotch Whisky is made. Watch as our team of operators tend to our traditional mashtun, gleaming copper stills and fill casks at our traditional distillery, which retains much of its original charm. Now, visitors to our distillery are invited to try our Distillery Only bottle. Only 1800 bottles of this 48% ABV expression have been produced and can only be purchased from our Visitor Centre. With its unique cask story, the Distillery Only bottle offers the familiar characteristics of Royal Lochnagar but with a different flavour profile.

Royal Lochnagar Distillery one of the jewels in the Royal Deeside crown is situated beside her Majesty the Queen’s Scottish Home, Balmoral Castle, in Crathie, half way between the villages of Ballater and Braemar, which is home to the world famous Highland Gathering and Games. The distillery takes its name from the mountain, Lochnagar, which is a Munro, a mountain over 3000ft high. The Royal name was bestowed upon the distillery following a visit by Queen Victoria on the 12th September 1848.

Here to introduce this spectacular expression is Brand Home Manager Clare Fraser.

Clare has worked in the world of whisky for almost ten years and is the third generation of Frasers to work at Royal Lochnagar. You could say it’s in her blood!

Now she describes what makes this Distillery Only bottle so special…

Specially selected casks of Royal Lochnagar that have been gently maturing from birth in sherry conditioned European Oak. These casks have been selected for their complexity and richness. This limited edition is a bit of a contrast to the Royal Lochnagar 12 Year Old expression.

When drank neat, there are aromas of rich dried fruits and mulled wine with hints of fresh fruits and grass.

By adding water the fruitiness becomes a bit more tropical and citrus, pineapples and oranges. It is still creamy and rich but a bit less in intensity but it still has that warm spicy aroma. 

As for taste, when served neat, the flavours are smooth and creamy on the palate and intermingled with dark berry and citrus fruits. The finish is medium with a slightly oaky aftertaste.

Adding water tends to give the citrus fruits a slight edge but on the palate it is still rich and sweet. The finish is now longer but drier with just a hint of a liquorice aftertaste.

Bring out the dark berry and citrus flavours with a rich fruit cake, perfect around the holiday season.

For those looking to visit the distillery, a tour is highly recommended. We are the smallest Diageo distillery, and everything here is still manual, from our old-fashioned open top mashtun, to our filling store where we hand-fill the casks. After the a visit to Royal Lochnagar, our nearest neighbour is Balmoral Castle, which you can visit in spring to late July, before the Royal Family stay for the summer. But Braemar Castle, 8 miles west of the distillery is also worth a visit - it's run by the local community, with some amazing artefacts.

With winter coming, it’s the perfect time to come and not only tour our distillery, but sample this unique Royal Lochnagar Distillery Only expression only available at the Visitor Centre. A treat for whisky novices and connoisseurs alike, it’s a memory that can continue to sample and savour even from home with your own Distillery Only bottle.