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Whisky firm secures funding to build distillery

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By Abbey Morton

A TOAST has been raised to new blends, a new online shop and £320,000 to build a new whisky distillery in Moffat.

Dark Sky Spirits has been given the funding from the South of Scotland Enterprise Partnership (SoSEP) to build the distillery, which was granted planning permission earlier this year.

The development is expected to create a dozen jobs across production and visitor centre roles, with an estimated 9000 visitors anticipated in its first year.

Construction is expected to begin early in 2021 with a view to starting to welcome visitors next autumn.

Traditional methods will be used to craft single malt whisky in small batches, such as wooden washbacks and worm tub condensers to create a medium-bodied Scotch with notes of biscuit and citrus, in keeping with the Lowland style.

In addition, a new website has been launched to promote the signature blend, The Moffat, as well as the new Auld Special Edition – three blended malt Scotch whiskies.

The new whiskies were chosen to represent different aspects of Scotch flavour, with one spicy 13-year-old blend, one fruity 15-year-old and one smoky 16-year-old.

Dark Sky Spirits managing director Nick Bullard said: “Auld Special Edition explores the landscape of Scotch flavour by choosing single casks, so there will be a limited release of just a few hundred bottles of each expression.

“The focus is on flavour and by exploring the range, people will learn something about their own whisky preferences. We hope they will encourage people to think and talk about their experience of whisky.”

Auld Special Edition whiskies have the hallmarks of single-cask expressions, including no added colour and are non-chill filtered.

The new website sells Dark Skies’ drinks as well as fudge and tablet, tasting glasses and features whisky cocktail recipes.

Nick hopes that revenue lost from retail outlets during the pandemic will be replaced by online sales, while his company continues to support local retailers.

Excited about the company’s expansion, including his new range, Nick said: “2020 has reminded us of the healing power of human interaction.

“If these thought provoking whiskies can bring people back together again – either in person or virtually – to chat about them, then that would be mission accomplished.”

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