Halewood to invest over £7m in new John Crabbie whisky distillery

After news at the start of the year that John Crabbie & Co would be making whisky again after a 40-year hiatus, parent company Halewood Wines & Spirits has announced plans to invest over £7 million in a new distillery in Edinburgh.

The new distillery, which is expected to open in early 2019, will be based in the Leith area of Edinburgh – representing “the first steps towards the return of continuous single malt distilling in the capital after almost 100 years’ absence”.

It was initially announced that the distillery would be located in the Granton area, however Halewood have opted for Leith, the historic home of the brand which was founded in 1801.

According to reports earlier this year, the distillery will have the ability to produce 165,000 litres of spirit annually, and it is expected that the brand will also make its first foray into gin production.

The brand has already released two whiskies – Crabbie 8 Year Old and Crabbie 30 Year Old – sourcing its base spirit from other Scotch whisky producers.

Established by its eponymous owner, John Crabbie, the brand started out in the port of Leith in the outskirts of Edinburgh. Until this year, its whisky had not graced the shelves since the 1970s, and in recent years, the brand has been more associated with flavoured alcoholic ginger beer and green ginger wine.

Commenting on the investment plans David Brown, managing director said: “We are delighted to announce our plans to invest in the creation of a new distillery in Leith. It’s particularly pleasing that it will bear the name of John Crabbie, surely one of Edinburgh’s most legendary sons.

“The site we have chosen in Leith has historical links with Scotch whisky production and maturation dating back over 200 years and we hope it will contribute to the rising prosperity of the area with the creation of new jobs and through attracting additional visitors to the city. With the growing popularity of Scotch whisky around the world the time is right to rediscover the Crabbie whisky brand and to put Edinburgh firmly back on the Scotch whisky map”.

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