The Cragganmore Distillery was founded in 1869 by John Smith, who is said to have been the most experienced distiller of his day. He had been manager of Macallan, Glenlivet and Wishaw distilleries, and was lease holder of Glenfarclas distillery when he persuaded his landlord, Sir George Macpherson-Grant, to lease him the land to build a new distillery at Ballindalloch beside the Strathspey railway line, in 1869. Cragganmore (the name of the hill behind the distillery, whose springs supply the water for production) was the first distillery to be deliberately sited to take advantage of the railway transport, and a private siding was built on the Strathspey railway to accommodate distillery traffic. John Smith was a great railway enthusiast, but since he weighed 22 stones (140kg) and was too wide to enter a railway carriage, he was obliged to travel in the guard's van! He died in 1886 leaving the business to his son Gordon, who largely rebuilt the distillery in 1901. In 1923, Gordon's widow sold the distillery to the White Horse Distillers Ltd., and the Distillery is now owned by Diageo plc., and is part of the Classic Malt Selection. Cragganmore Single Malt is the most complex Speyside Malt and as one of Speyside's smaller distilleries, it is, therefore, in limited supply. The Distillery's unique flat topped spirit stills and slowly condensed in tradtiional wooden worm-tubs, promotes Cragganmore's complexity
Michael Jackson notes:
Colour Golden. Nose The most complex aroma of any malt. Its bouquet is astonishingly fragrant and delicate, with sweetish notes of cut grass and herbs (thyme perhaps?). Body Light to medium, but very firm and smooth. Palate Delicate, clean, restrained, with a huge range of herbal flowery notes. Finish Long.