What is Islay?

Islay is a Scottlish Island that is renowned for producing some exceptional single malt whisky, typified by a peaty (smoky) character. 

Where is Islay?

Islay is the southernmost island of the Inner Hebrides of Scotland. Known as "The Queen of the Hebrides", it lies in Argyll just south west of Jura and around 40 kilometres north of the Irish coast.

How is Islay pronounced?

In English, Islay is pronounced as EYE-la. If you're really looking to impress, the Gaelic name of the island is Ìle, which is pronounced as EE-leh. 

What distilleries are on Islay?

There are currently nine operational whisky distilleries on Islay:

What is Islay whisky like?

Islay single malts reflect the nature of the Island itself.  They're famous for being peaty, with smokey notes resulting from the way the barley is dried using peat smoke.  Other common notes reflect the maritime nature of Islay, with seaweed, brine and kippers.

Why are Islay whiskies peaty?

When large scale legal distilleries began to flourish on Islay in the 17th and 18th centuries, peat was the fuel used to dry the malt – the barley grain that thrives on Islay. Peat is semi-composted vegetation that over hundreds of years has been compressed and compacted; it can be cut into slices, dried, and burnt as a fuel. When peat burns, it produces pungent smoke. This smoke is absorbed by the drying malt creating a peaty, or smoky, flavour profile in the resulting whisky.

Our Islay whisky

We love Islay single malt whiskies, and you can find the bottles we have available to buy here.