Inchgower stands outside the fishing port of Buckie. The distillery was built in 1871 by Alexander Wilson & Company to replace their distillery at Tochineal nearby, which had become too small – and where the landlord had doubled the rent. Tochineal’s was moved was moved over to the new distillery. Wilson & Company operated Inchgower until 1936, when the firm went bankrupt and both the distillery was sold to Arthur Bell & Sons. Arthur Bell & Sons made a series of modernizations to Inchgower, including increasing the number of stills from two to four, doubling the level of capacity and bringing it to its modern ability. In 1985, Arthur Bell & Sons was taken over by Guinness, who were then merged with United Distillers and Vintners in 1987. Diageo, the Whisky industry giant, eventually bought Guinness, therefore acquiring Inchgower. In 2006 Diageo closed Inchgower for a year in order to launch a major refurbishment.
One of the most significant changes was the installation of a so-called ‘closed yeast pitching system’ that added yeast to the wash automatically. This innovation gives an added degree of control over the style of the Whisky, but is less ‘traditional’. As the distillery has moved into the twenty-first century, it has continued to go from strength to strength. In 2004 it released a 27-year-old bottling from 1976, which was received with great critical acclaim. Hopefully the rest of this century will continue to bring such great releases.