Historic Highland malt The Dalmore to become official whisky of V&A Dundee under four-year partnership

A Highland malt rated one of the best whiskies in the world is to become the official dram of Scotland's new design museum under a lucrative four-year deal.

Published 26th Nov 2020
Updated 21 st Sep 2023

V&A Dundee is to work together with The Dalmore - which is also said to be the fastest growing luxury whisky brand in the world - on a number of major projects celebrating creativity and design.

Under the partnership, which is expected to be worth well in excess of six figures, is understood that a limited edition V&A Dundee version of The Dalmore will be produced by the 181-year-old distiller, which recently announced the exclusive release of rare bottlings with the London department store Harrods.

The Dalmore, which is based on the banks of the Cromarty Firth at Alness, near Inverness, was recently honoured at the International Spirits Challenge when its 35-year-old whisky was rated the “supreme champion.”

Its master distiller, Richard Paterson, is one of the best-known figures in the industry in Scotland after working in the businesses for more than half a century.

The Dalmore is hugely popular among collectors due to its unique “Royal Stag” emblem, which was created by the Mackenzie family, owners of the distiller for nearly a century, in honour of a clan chieftain who is said to have saved King Alexander III of Scotland from being gored by a stag in 1263.

A film celebrating the value of high-quality design to Scotland, is also expected to be commissioned under plans for the two organisations to work together to "cultivate a global platform for contemporary master creatives and their protégés."

The Dalmore has agreed to donate £60,000 to V&A Dundee from the forthcoming auction of a rare 60-year-old bottle in Harrods to get the partnership up and running.

V&A Dundee director Leonie Bell said: “This partnership is a brilliant example of how two organisations can come together to celebrate Scotland’s heritage, commitment to craftsmanship, and its incredible design potential both at home and around the world.

“It will support V&A Dundee as it extends its reach across Dundee and Scotland and champions design from Scotland around the world.

"It’s because of the innovative and generous support of many trusts, companies and private donors that V&A Dundee is able to engage audiences in the wonders of design.”

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Richard Paterson said: “Just as I’m personally driven to support the future of the whisky industry and to leave a legacy of which we can all be proud, our union with this iconic design institution is very much future-facing.

"This partnership is a celebration of our shared relentless pursuit of excellence and a commitment to artistry, in both creating and sharing the exceptional. There will be much to follow over the coming months and years.

Claire Blackadder, head of brand at The Dalmore, said: “This donation is just the beginning of a four-year collaboration about which we’re hugely excited as it will touch so many people.

"V&A Dundee does incredible work in design education and showcasing past and future design talent – from Charles Rennie Mackintosh to the most exciting contemporary designers.”

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