We have inquisitive minds. If we were not inherently risk-takers, dreamers and romantics we wouldn’t have bought this wonderful old distillery in the first place. Jim McEwan thinks of Bruichladdich as a Cinderella, a ravishing natural beauty who was overlooked and unwanted – never given the chance to go to the ball.
So romantics we are; and independent romantics at that. Which means we’re as free to follow our hearts as our heads; and that we’re not answerable to some remote board of directors or finance department demanding efficiency and performance. Every day is a new adventure and every day we challenge ourselves and ask: “What next? What if?”
We believe that the Scotch whisky industry
is turning out an increasingly bland, industrial product – for profit, not passion. The domination of global mega-corporations has led to homogeneity, predictability and the worship of the status quo… because at massive industrial scale, predictability equals profitability.
We are not bound by those rules or those values. We are a collection of individuals, each of whom brings their own skills and and their own dreams to this rollercoaster enterprise – whether that’s Budgie, our Stillman, Jim McEwan, our Head Distiller, or one of our many farmers who provide our barley and are part of the wider community of Bruichladdich. And we have no marketing department. What we say, is what we believe, is what we do.
Moreover, we all live here and work here. That, apart from immersing us in the soul, the culture, the society, the heritage and the land of this great western tip of Islay, allows us to experiment, to ask questions of ourselves and our methods, to watch our spirit gently maturing here beside Lochindaal and to perceive how the many micro-influences on the character of the whisky – barley, terroir, climate, mashing, distilling rate, oak, casks, humidity, saline sea air, warehouse aspect – develop a single malt Scotch whisky with a personality all of its own.
This freedom to challenge and to pioneer is central to the heart and soul of Bruichladdich.
Above all we believe in authenticity. That a whisky should speak of the land and of the people who crafted it. Ultimate provenance, ultimate traceability. A whisky that could not be made anywhere else or by anyone else – diversity, honesty. A spirit born from a philosophy. A spirit with a story to tell.