Johnnie Walker Glenkinchie

Glenkinchie Distillery History

The Rate brothers started their whisky making in 1825 when they opened a distillery which they called Milton.

They then expanded and built the present distillery on the current site in 1837 when the name became Glenkinchie bases in a glen where the Kinchie Burn flows. Giving the name.

This only lasted 16 years (1853) when the Rate brothers were sequestrated (bankrupt) and whisky making stopped. In 1881 the distillery opened once again and with new investors the plant was rebuilt and expanded into its present form.  

With a number of small distilleries Rosebank, St. Magdalene, Grange and Clydesdale Glenkinchie formed Scottish Malt Distillers in 1914. The Glenkinchie distillery is also a Museum and Visitor Centre where you can see how whisky is made and try a selection of homemade Scottish whiskies.  

There is also a lounge and bar area.

Glenkinchie Distillery East Lothian Scotland
Kinchie Burn East Lothian Glenkinchie Distillery

Johnnie Walker the Beginning

John Walker was born in 1805 on a Todrigg’s Farm in the west of Scotland. After his father’s death the farm was sold 1819, and John purchased his first shop the next year in Kilmarnock Scotland. From historic records he was selling Rum, Brandy, Gin and Islay whisky.

1837 John has a son Alexander, who was to take over the business on his father’s death in 1857.

1853 the mixing of different ages of whisky from the same distillery was allowed. This was called vatting.

1860 the spirits Act was passed allowing different whiskies to be blended together in bonded warehouses.

1865 Alexander creates a malt whisky which he registers in 1867 under copyright as Old Highland Whisky,

later to become Johnnie Walker Black Label.

Glenkinchie Distillery Johnnie Walker's Lowland Home
Glenkinchie The Lowland Home of Jonnie Walker.jpg
Glenkinchie Distillery Whisky Shop
Cask Whisky Bottle Your Own