Wester Spirit Co. announce launch of Glasgow's first rum distillery in over 300 years

An innovative drinks company has successfully launched Glasgow's first rum distillery in over 300 years.

Published 10th Oct 2018
Updated 21 st Sep 2023

Bucking the current trend across the country of distilling gin and whisky and following in the footsteps of Dark Matter Distillers in Aberdeenshire, Wester Spirit Co., which was set up by Glasgow residents Zander Macgregor and Allan Nairn, launched their first rum in July last year.

Founders Allan Nairn and Zander Macgregor. Picture: WSC

Now, they have brought their very own distillery to the bustling hub of Partick, which they describe as a "natural home for a distinctive and creative brand to reside amongst the vibrant eclectic mix of bars and eateries".

So far they've had a positive reaction from the local community, with many taking pride in the fact that they now have a rum distillery in their midst and local businesses offering to help out in different ways.

•  READ MORE: Glasgow spirits company set to launch Scottish spiced rum

Rekindling traditional rum distillation in Glasgow, the entrepreneurial pair are stepping away from conventional copper stills and using stainless steel instead.

The team say their new 500 litre Genio Still (which begins its first run this week) is equipped with fully programmable technology to increase the efficiency of the distilling process and has the option of manual control to allow changes to the smallest details in the flavour profile.

They added that this means they will be able to reproduce their current spiced rum recipe - which had previously been made for them at Strathearn Distillery - with "unrivalled accuracy".


The distillery will also provide the opportunity for the brand to meet the growing demand for spiced rum by increasing the production limit from 250 bottles per month to 6000.

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The distillers confirmed there will be tours available over each weekend - Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday - with people shown around the distillery followed by a masterclass in the history and processes of rum production, before ending with the opportunity for guests to create their own cocktail.

Other tours will also place the power in the hands of the party as they spice their very own rum.

The distillery will also host pop-up restaurants and secret gigs further cementing their connection to the city's thriving nightlife.

When asked how it feels to have grown from a small idea between the pair to now sitting in their own fully realised distillery, co-founder Zander MacGregor said: "We are just kind of pinching ourselves at the moment, we were limited as to what we could do at Strathearn, but being here in Glasgow, we have total freedom to do what we want on our own kit and we can now put all of the ideas we've had for the last year into practice."

This includes creating new varieties of rum as so far the pair have only released their original spiced rum.

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"We've got a lot of ideas," adds MacGregor, "and the distillery space will evolve over the next two months until we are really happy with the set up and then we can start creating the full rum range that we want to create.

"We hope to eventually have golden rums - aged in casks - and we'll also have a white rum too, as well as creating collaborations, such as the one we did with Drygate Brewery, with other small companies around the country."

So how does it feel to be one of the first rum distilleries in the country and on the crest of a wave of interest in this fledgling category?

"It's good, it feels like uncharted territory a little and there's a good bit of excitement around the category at the moment and we just want to do our own thing."

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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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