Located in the foothills of the magnificent Brecon Beacons, within the bounds of the Fforest Fawr National Geopark, the creation of Penderyn Distillery was driven by the desire to create a whisky as pure and precious as Welsh Gold.
Its site was selected for the fresh supply of natural spring water – drawn directly from deep in the Brecon Beacons via their own borehole – and instead of using the traditional copper pot stills favoured by Scottish makers, the distillery was set up with unique Faraday and lantern stills (which can be combined) producing a really pure, high-strength, light spirit with lots of fruit and flavour.
Finally the spirit is matured, usually in the finest ex-bourbon and madeira casks, or occasionally combined with port or sherry barrels to perfect the finish. The results speak for themselves - award-winning single malt whiskies well known for their flavourful spirit of extraordinary strength and purity.
A great spirit to start off with, when laid to rest in the cask it only improves further.
The water comes from our own borehole underneath the distillery. It's drawn from deep in the Brecon Beacons so it's a steady, clean supply of lovely soft water.
- Penderyn’s unique copper single-pot still was designed by Dr David Faraday, a relative of the great 19th-century scientist Michael Faraday
- This special Faraday still produces a “draw” (the alcoholic mixture that condenses in a still before it can be distilled and put into barrels to age) that is much lighter than a traditional Scotch
- All the elements of the distillation process are closely controlled by an all-female distilling team selected for their superior abilities and ‘nose’ for the job, enabling the consistent production of high quality spirit
- Penderyn Whisky was launched on St David’s Day 2004 in the presence of HRH Prince Charles
- Their ‘gold seam’ design relates to the founders dream of creating whisky as pure and precious as Welsh gold
- Penderyn was the first whisky distillery in Wales in over a century – bringing a lost art back to the area
- A high proportion of their barrels begin life at Buffalo Trace, which is widely recognised as one of the finest bourbons in the world
- Penderyn Whisky has quickly gained a worldwide reputation winning over 50 Gold Medals en-route, and their whiskies are now available in over 40 countries
- A second Penderyn Distillery, dedicated to solely producing peated whisky, opened in Llandudno in May 2021
Cask World's Highlights
Penderyn – one of the few ‘Godfathers’ of the New World whisky industry – have been established for just over two decades. Their distillery surrounded by waterfalls, moorland and hillsides below the Brecon Beacons is home to the unusual Faraday stills that I was really excited to see.
I was shown round by Technical and Sales Director Dr Giancarlo Bianchi. Highly educated, well-mannered and extremely passionate, I could tell he was proud of what they have achieved, and although I imagine he’s toured the distillery a thousand times before, still enjoyed showing us around.
He explained the Faraday stills (a bit like a combination of Scotch & Coffey stills) are used to batch distil rather than for continuous distillation and remove more undesirable chemical compounds than traditional Scottish stills, resulting in an industry high 92% alcohol concentrate of new make spirit. The whisky spirit is married with natural water from the Fforest Fawr National Geopark.
They are making Welsh single malt their way and we love it – one of the things I love most of all about Penderyn is their unrestricted ‘gloves off’ approach to production. They also understand the New World whisky industry is booming and share a similar appreciation to mine for the New World whisky industry as a whole.
CEO Steven Davies is clearly an astute and successful businessman. Penderyn are now proud distributors for two of the world’s finest single malt distilleries – Milk & Honey, Israel and Armorik, France – demonstrating they have what it takes to develop the Penderyn brand into a global business.
Penderyn at a glance
Alun Evans & a group of friends
Penderyn and Llandudno Wales, UK
The Distilling Team
Laura Davies - Distillery Manager
Bethan Morgans - Distillery Manager
Aista Phillips - Master Blender
Stephen Davies - CEO
Laura Davies - Distillery Manager
Bethan Morgans – Distillery Manager
Aista Phillips – Master Blender
As well as their two distilleries, Penderyn boast a fantastic dedicated visitor centre & shop
Primary Whisky Types
Small batch single malt whiskies, each with an individual character
Charred Oak Barrels - for the initial maturation they use the finest hand-selected bourbon barrels and to finish the whisky they then transfer to Portuguese barriques that have previously nurtured a rich Madeira wine. Occasionally Port wood barrels from Portugal and dry Oloroso Sherry casks from Spain are also used to produce different expressions.
The Welsh Whisky Company's own fully HMRC licensed excise warehouse
Av. Length of Maturation
No age statement distillery
Current Bottle Prices
Jim Murray's Whisky Bible 2021 - a record breaking 18 Liquid Gold Awards
Whisky Advocate 2021 - 95/100 for 15yo Bourbon Single Cask and 93/100 for Rich Oak Single Cask
Jim Murray’s Whisky Bible 2020 - European Whisky of the Year, Winner - Madeira Single Cask
San Franscisco World Spirits 2020 - Double Gold for Peated & Gold for Portwood and Rich Oak
Spirits Business World Whisky Masters 2020 - Gold for Madeira, Peated, Myth, Celt, and Moscatel Small Batch
San Franscisco World Spirits 2019, Gold for Sherrywood
IWSC Worldwide Whisky 2019 - Gold for Portwood and Portwood SC & Gold 95/100 for Rich Oak
Whiskies of the World 2019 - Barrel Finished Non-Age Statement, Gold (Best in class) for Portwood
Ultimate Spirits Challenge 2019 - World Whisky, Very Good 88/100 for Madeira and Legend & 85/100 for Sherrywood
Spirits Design & Packaging 2019 - Master for Rich Oak & Gold for Rhiannon
Take a look around
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