Buy a whisky cask
300 bottles of single malt whisky in the making
We’re a young, independent, organic whisky distillery on the west coast of Scotland. We exist to create experimental spirits and pioneer sustainable production.
Our story began in 2012: Annabel pondering her future whilst working as a consultant in London. During a whisky road trip came a lightbulb moment: why do so many distilleries do things the same way things have always been done… perhaps there are other ways? Then five years creating a distillery from scratch on a wild, west-coast estate. We started distilling in March 2017 and from the beginning we’ve set out to do things differently, to get people to think again about Scotch. We’re uninhibited by tradition and we’re not afraid to colour outside of the lines.
The first of our experiments to be released, our Botanical Spirit is based on our unaged whisky spirit and redistilled with ten botanicals by our friends, Beinn An Tuirc, a west coast gin distillery. Inspired by the beautiful flavours in our unaged spirit and the wild herbs and flowers that grow around the distillery, we set out to create a perfect marriage of the two. This unusual spirit makes a fantastic cocktail or simply serve over ice with tonic and Angostura bitters.
Our name, Ncn’ean, is an abbreviation of Neachneohain, the Queen of Spirits in Gaelic legend. We pronounce our name Nc-ne-an, which sounds like Nc-knee-anne. Neachneohain was a huntress: strong, independent and never afraid to walk her own path. A quiet rebel.
Neachneohain was also a fierce protector of nature. We try to follow that ethos in everything we do: we’re the first fully organic distillery in Scotland. We use our own pure spring water. All our energy comes from renewable sources. We recycle waste heat through the warehouses. Our left-over grain feeds the cows on the farm. Nothing is wasted.
We sweat the small stuff too: we serve organic coffee and food, we think carefully about our packaging, we monitor the waste we create and we try to encourage our suppliers and customers to think about what they are doing, too. Where there isn’t a good solution, we try to find partners who can work with us to create one.
Founder and CEO
London girl. Lover of wild places. Caught the whisky bug. Built a distillery. Our very own Neachneohain.
Master Distiller 2012-2017
The late Dr Jim Swan was one of the greats of the whisky industry with 50 years of experience from around the world. He masterminded the design of our distillery and our base whisky recipe – he is greatly missed.
23 years with one of the giants of the industry. A passion for the west coast. Bringing it all together at Ncn’ean. Has a life goal to get to work by boat one day.
Came to Drimnin from the east. Has taken to distilling like a duck to water. Often found polishing our spirit safe with Brasso. The queen of our spirits.
Born and bred on the Isle of Mull. A late career change from fish farming to distilling. Splits his time between distilling and tussling with our chipper. If lost, can be found at Mull Rugby Club.
This free spirited Norfolk gal has a passion for all things environmental and made a bee line to work and settle with us. Likes attempting to get lost, and finding her way to the nearest pub for refuge.
A recent settler from about as far away as you can get from Drimnin. Keeps the show on the road and us all in order. A contender for the biggest and best wardrobe collection on the west coast.
We’re young and independent and this gives us the freedom to experiment. We’re exploring new taste profiles every month, seeing what a small batch whisky can deliver.
Scotland has a long history of experimentation and we believe in following that trail-blazing spirit. We’re using some of the most imaginative distilling ideas from around the world, combined with the best ingredients Scotland has to offer, to create a whisky that’s easy to drink and mix.
We’re trying longer mashing times and slower fermentation and experimenting with yeasts not commonly used in distilling. The high, narrow cut on our still is helping us produce a purer spirit. Our unusual lamp-glass-shaped stills encourage a gentle distillation and significant amounts of reflux, creating a lighter spirit that retains its fruity notes.And we’ve installed temperature controls in our warehouses to create different flavours over time.
Making whisky requires patience and we’re just at the beginning. Our first whisky will be ready in 2020. But if you can’t wait until then, try our Botanical Spirit which represents the first milestone on our journey or buy a whole barrel of whisky.
The distillery is located on the beautiful and wild Drimnin Estate which offers long stretches of coastline, well sign-posted walks and plenty of wildlife spotting opportunities (including White Tailed and Golden Eagles, Scottish Wildcat, Pine Martens and Otters). More details about the estate and accommodation options, including a bed and breakfast, are available on the estate website.
Just 12 miles down the road, Lochaline is the main village on the Morvern peninsula. It is served by a regular ferry service to Mull and has more accommodation options, including B&Bs, hotels and the acclaimed Whitehouse restaurant.
We sell OS maps and walking guides in our shop for those who would like to experience the wilder side of Morvern. There are extensive walks all over the peninsula that take in the spectacular views over the Sound of Mull, Loch Sunart, and north to Ardnamurchan and the islands.
If you’re up for an adventure, please come and visit us. We are open for a morning and an afternoon tour Monday-Friday, where you can take a look behind the scenes in the distillery, taste our evolving spirit and admire the wonderful views with coffee and cake. £15 per person. Please pre-book by selecting a date on the calendar (up to 3 months in advance) or call (+44 1967 421698) or email us.
Once a week, you can visit us by Sealink water-taxi from Tobermory. You can find the crossing dates here for April, May, June and July. To book, select the date on the calendar or call or email us. If you are coming from Mull there are also regular ferries that run from Fishnish to Lochaline seven days a week (timetable is here). If you are coming on your own boat there are pontoons in Lochaline or you can anchor off the coast below the distillery – give us a call in advance and we’ll come and pick you up.
Tours Available Fully Booked
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