Balmenach whisky distillery is located in the heart of the Scottish Speyside whisky region. Situated 5 miles east of Grantown on Spey close to the burn of Cromdale. Founded in 1824, by James McGregor, who farmed at Balmenach and distilled illegally there until, in 1823, he received a warning from a local Excise officer and took out one of the first licences on Speyside. James died in 1878, and was succeeded by his brother John who came back from a successful career in New Zealand to take over. The distillery remained in McGregor family hands for some time and in 1897 it was renamed the Balmenach Glenlivet Distillery Company. The distillery was sold in 1922 and subsequently became part of Distillers Company Limited in 1925 before it was acquired, in 1930, by Scottish Malt Distillers (SMD).
In 1962 the number of stills at Balmenach was expanded from four to six and a so-called ‘Saladin Box’ (equipment to process malted barley) was installed in 1964 – the same year they installed one such device at Benrinnes.
The Whiskies of Balmenach are rather fruity and not peated, which is very typical for a Speyside distillery. But there have only been very few distillery bottlings. The major part of the bottling is done by independent bottlers like Gordon and MacPhail or Douglas Laing.