the history of peat at Knockdhu
When a golden opportunity comes a knocking, you make the most of it. Exactly what a certain Mr. John Morrison did back in 1892. An enterprising man by nature, John had just bought the Knock Estate in Aberdeenshire. Turned out that this wasn’t just a handsome parcel of turf, it was home to a most fortuitous coincidence.
The land was full of peat and barely, contained springs of pure clear Highland water and sat next to the Great Northern Railway. All the ingredients you need for the production and distribution of a fine single malt Scotch whisky. John Morrison needed no further invitation. Two years later, The Knockdhu Distillery was born.
From 1894, the ‘Men of Knock’ began producing the finest single malt. To begin with, it’s said their efforts had a peaty edge – thanks to the peat-fired kilns that dried the precious grains of malted barley. However, over time, production methods changed, giving rise to the non-peated style anCnoc is renowned for today.
Those standard anCnoc malts can rightly be described as a pleasingly curious affair – modern yet traditional, sweet yet spicy, fragrant yet robust. But as the unofficial motto of Knockdhu has it, ‘sometimes to go forward, you have to go back’. Which is why, in 2004, the Distillery set about creating a heavily peated spirit, in homage to the malt’s peaty origins.