The Lake District is to have its first official whisky distillery. It will be housed in a converted Victorian model farm on the edge of Bassenthwaite and should produce some 300,000 bottles of malt whisky a year.
Paul Currie, co-founder of the Isle of Arran distillery, heads the consortium of investors. ‘The water is ideal,’ he explains. ‘It flows from a source at Sprinkling Tarn through the foothills of Scafell Pike, which are rich in peat and will give the whisky its flavour and depth. Combine that with the purity of the air, and you have the perfect raw ingredients for distilling whisky.’
In the 1800s, Cumbria, once part of Scotland, was rife with bootlegged whisky production thanks to the hilly terrain and abundance of rivers, but the new Lakes Distillery will be the first legal operation.
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