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Skye distiller Torabhaig auctioning two rare bottles of its first whisky

Scottish distillery Torabhaig is preparing to auction two rare signed bottles of its first single malt ahead of its general release in February.

Included in the auction are a single cask bottle from the Torabhaig Family Reserve - which would not otherwise be available to purchase - and a bottle of the new Legacy Series 2017 peated single malt, the distillery's first expression. Each bottle has been signed by all nine Torabhaig distillers.

The auction will start on 31 January on Whisky Auction with all proceeds going to two charities that are close to the hearts of the Torabhaig team: the National Centre for Gaelic Language and Culture, Sabhal Mòr Ostaig and the Dr MacKinnon Memorial Broadford Hospital.

Fully operational since January 2017, Torabhaig - the first whisky distillery to be built on the Isle of Skye in nearly 200 years - uses traditional wooden washbacks for fermentation and distils its whisky in copper stills.

It is set to release Legacy Series 2017 for general sale through specialist retailers on 19 February. The first-edition bottling is a single distillation vintage issue, with just over 3,000 bottles available for distribution in the UK and 6,000 in the US.

Neil Mathieson, CEO of Mossburn Distillers, the company behind Torabhaig, said: "This Legacy series will lay down the foundations for the future profile of our bottled whisky and with each edition we will guide your journey with details on the barley, yeast and casks on the back label of the bottle. 

"For the first, the 2017, we selected only 100 barrels from our first quarter's distillation, the spirit having been aged solely in Bourbon barrels that we shipped directly from the Kentucky distillery the day they were emptied."

On the Torabhaig Family Reserve, Neil said: "Whilst selecting casks to go into our first bottling of Torabhaig, the Legacy 2017, we chose to bottle a single cask in order to evaluate the whisky following the bottling process.

"The cask we selected was no. 311 from our third production run, which took place in early 2017. It was bottled by hand unblended, at cask strength and with only light filtration. The bottles from this cask will be placed in the distillery's reserves and will not be made available for sale."

18 January 2021 - Bethany Whymark