Popular Scots spirits producer to open Scotland's first vodka distillery experience

A popular Scottish spirits producer is preparing to open what is thought to be Scotland's first vodka distillery experience. 

Published 6th Mar 2019
Updated 6 th Mar 2019

Ogilvy Vodka, one of Scotland's first producers of potato vodka, is expecting to welcome over 3,000 visitors in its first year at the £150k centre.

Husband-and-wife team, Graeme and Caroline Jarron, who have been distilling Ogilvy vodka at their Angus farm since 2014, said that the new venue will offer an unforgettable ‘field to bottle’ experience, which will take in the sights and sounds of both a working potato farm and a working vodka distillery.

Ogilvy Vodka
The new visitor centre. Picture: Jakub Jiwanicki

Tours will start on vintage tractor and trailer, which will showcase a behind the scenes look at potato farming.

Visitors will then take an immersive, step-by-step walk-through of the distilling process and a guided tasting of the distillery’s award-winning single estate potato vodka in the attraction’s boutique tasting room.

Housed in a converted stone barn, the visitor centre is designed to be a bright, modern and welcoming space, featuring nods to the distillery’s zero waste ethos including ‘tattie box’ wall cladding and recycled Ogilvy Vodka bottles as eye-catching light fittings.

Born out of a desire to use ‘wonky potatoes’, Ogilvy Vodka now processes thousands of kilos of misshaped spuds that would otherwise have gone to waste.

Graeme Jarron stated that he hopes the visitor experience will become a must-visit for spirits lovers, he said: “Since Ogilvy Vodka was launched, we’ve dreamt of expanding our offering to take visitors behind the scenes and follow the journey of the humble spud from field to bottle.

“As well as being the first vodka visitor attraction of our kind in Scotland, we’re also excited to offer spirits lovers something a little bit different – we’re not your conventional distillery experience, that’s for sure!

“With the launch of the V&A in Dundee and around 100,000 people visiting our neighbour, Glamis Castle, each year, we can’t wait to open our doors and join a growing number of extraordinary attractions that make Angus such a brilliant place to visit.”

Alison Smith, head of Angus Council’s business team added that they are "delighted" to have been able to support Ogilvy Vodka to develop their business with the creation of their new distillery centre, she said: "This new investment allows their business to continue to grow and is a welcome addition to our successful tourism sector, which brought in £231 million in economic impact to Angus in 2017.

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“This is a fantastic example of a traditional agricultural business in Angus, diversifying their offer into the food and drink sector, with a quality product with authentic provenance. I am looking forward to seeing how the business continues to develop and contribute positively to the local economy.”

The new visitor centre shop will be open Friday 1pm - 5pm, Saturday 11am - 4pm and Sunday 11am - 4pm, with the guided tours costing £15 and running on Fridays at 4pm, Saturdays at 11am and 2pm, and Sunday, 11am and 2pm.

Driven by a passion for all things drinks-related, Sean writes for The Scotsman extensively on the subject. He can also sometimes be found behind the bar at the world famous Potstill bar in Glasgow where he continues to enhance his whisky knowledge built up over 10 years advising customers from all over the world on the wonders of our national drink. Recently, his first book was published. Dubbed Gin Galore, it explores Scotland's best gins and the stories behind those that make them.
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