Guide to Moray Speyside

The Macallan Distillery

The Macallan Visitor Centre and Distillery
The Macallan Visitor Centre and Distillery

Established in 1824 The Macallan has become one of the most well know Speyside distilleries. The recently opened visitor centre and distillery sits nestled into the Speyside countryside 400m away from the old distillery and is a popular place to visit. It’s a new distillery but Macallan still uses the same water and small still design to make its whisky.

Macallan’s cutting edge dramatic design attracts not just whisky enthusiast but also photographers, designers and architects to its distillery and tours. There is a strong sense of history and tradition with a whisky wall displaying a priceless collection of Macallan bottles from the 19th century to the present day.

Macallan Tours

The Macallan Distillery Visitor Centre opened in 2018. It is normally open all year round for distillery tours and tastings however, in the current Covid-19 climate, check their website for the latest opening times and tour availability. It’s always recommended you book in advance. They tend to release tour dates in batches. Macallan Tours are in high demand and it is recommended you book well in advance.

Macallan are continually adapting and improving their tour offerings so visit their website for their latest tours. You might see references online and in guidebooks to some iconic tours that are no longer available.  The Macallan Six Pillars Tour was a popular tour in the old distillery giving an introduction to Macallan’s production process including its particular attention to casks. The Six Pillars are Macallan’s guiding principles.

The Macallan Discovery Experience

  • Billed as a journey from “acorn to glass”
  • Explore Macallan’s history and heritage and the Macallan Whisky Wall
  • Macallan roast coffee and home baked scones to start
  • Distillery tour followed by whisky tasting in the Cave Priveé
  • Tour finishes in the Macallan Bar
  • This Macallan tour costs £50 per person and lasts 2 hours and 30 minutes

The Macallan Mastery Experience

  • An in depth tour experience which includes a commemorative  glass
  • Start with a with a dram at The Macallan Whisky Wall
  • Lunch and wine in Elchies Brasserie
  • In depth tour  through The Macallan distillery
  • Curated whisky tastin in the iconic Cave Priveé
  • Whisky flight in the Macallan Bar
  • Personalised shopping in the Boutique
  • This tour costs £250 per person and lasts 4 hours

The Cave Priveé is a special area in the heart of the visitor centre which houses private casks. The tasting area is at the end of a glass walled walkway with this area.

Macallan Whisky Tastings

On the first floor, you can enjoy a tasting in the  Macallan bar area. There is whisky flight menu. Some of which may no longer be commercially available. Experienced bar staff are on hand to guide you if required. There is also an extensive selection of Macallan whiskies in the bar menu (25ml). Macallan also has a cocktail menu. This is updated regularly by the bar staff who develop the cocktail recipes. The bar has beautiful views of the Speyside countryside.

The Macallan Distillery is one of the few distilleries in Speyside with a place to eat. In this case, Elchies Brasserie which has an ever changing menu reflecting local produce. Easter Elchies House is depicted on many Macallan labels. You will see the house near car park area.

The Macallan Boutique has an impressive selection of whisky to purchase including rarer Macallans with knowledgeable guides on hand.  There are also branded items for sale including whisky glasses, books and Macallan Ice Ball makers.

Check The Macallan Tour Availability

Highlights & Summary

Macallan offers a range of distillery tours in its award winning visitor centre. Whisky flights and cocktails are available in the bar on the first floor. The Whisky Wall is on the left as you enter the visitor centre and on your right is the Boutique. Enjoy locally inspired food at Elchies Brasserie which is at the back of the building. Photography is permitted in most areas.

How to get to The Macallan Distillery

The Macallan Distillery is situated in a rural location near Craigellachie in Speyside. It’s not safe to walk to Macallan even if you are staying in the closest village of Craigellachie. Instead use a local taxi service. If you are driving, please note that drink driving laws in Scotland are extremely strict and there is a zero tolerance policy. The Macallan Distillery sells driver packs which you can use to take away samples for later. For detailed directions click on the link within the map.

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