PORT CHARLOTTE – BRUICHLADDICH’S SMOKEY OFFSPRING
To understand the connection between Port Charlotte and the Bruichladdich Distillery, we should probably peek into the history of the both Bruichladdich the distillery and the town of Port Charlotte. Port Charlotte is a village on the island of Islay in the Inner Hebrides, Scotland. It was founded in 1828. By 1991 it grown to a “massive” population of 350 residents. At that rate I’m willing to bet it hasn’t grown or diminished much in the past 30 years
Port Charlotte was named after Lady Charlotte Campbell Bury, the mother of it’s founder, Walter Fredrick Campbell. Port Charlotte, was, as were many of the towns in Scotland, built around existing distilleries to provide housing for it’s workers. The distillery in the instance was Lochindaal Distillery. Most if not all of these original buildings still exist. With part of it it used as a youth hostel and wildlife center, some of it is being used by a local garage and the remaining warehouses being owned and operated by the Bruichladdich Distillery, to mature their Port Charlotte Heavily Peated single malts. This name of course, paying tribute to both the village and the original distillery
Port Charlotte Distillery was a purpose-built distillery, founded in 1829 when it was operated by Colin Campbell. In 1831 George McLennan continued until 1835 when he was declared bankrupt. This was pattern that seemed to repeat with multiple owners until 1852 when the Rhins Distillery & company took over for a short period. Though they only owned it for 3 years. This is not to say bad luck had abandoned the distillery. On 18 May 1861 a fire broke out in the kiln at the distillery which resulted in the destruction of the kiln and about 20 bushels of malt. The villagers managed to extinguish the fire before the rest of the distillery was damaged. From 1855 the distillery was operated by John B Sheriff of Glasgow until 1921. In 1921 it was acquired by Benmore Distilleries Limited which was taken over in 1929 by the Distillery Company ltd. They saw no use in keeping in running however. This resulted in the closure of the facility as a distillery
Port Charlotte – Port Charlotte Heavily Peated single malts are peated to a heavyweight 40PPM. Trickle distilled through a tall, narrow necked still, resulting in a rich and aromatic spirit that has all the power of peat whilst maintaining an elegance and finesse
All Port Charlotte malts are matured all their life in the Port Charlotte warehouses on the side of Loch Indaal, Islay, where they can respond to the sea air and unique seasonal changes of Scotland’s west coast. Each cask is carefully watched over by Bruichladdich staff, before being bottled in Harvey Hall, utilizing Islay spring water. Port Charlotte single malts explore the complexities of natural whisky, through barley provenance, cask influence and the passing of time
There are always a number of Port Charlotte single malt scotch whiskies available. Currently there are 6. The 10 Year Old, The Islay Barley 2012, Islay Barley 2013 as well as the limited editions OLC: 01 and PAC: 01. There is also the MC: 01, which is only available in duty free shops. The Port Charlotte line is for those who desire an elegant scotch whisky with just the right amount of smoke. Don’t get me wrong, I will gladly get blown away by the triple digit PPM of peat smoke in Bruichladdich’s Octomore, but this is an excellent route for those new to the world of peated malts. Slainte!