Mackays Hotel
Check Availability

Following the Whisky Trail

Posted: April 29th, 2019 | Posted in: General News

Bilbo Baggins once exclaimed, ‘I’m going on an adventure!’

Luckily in the Highlands, an adventure doesn’t require a substantial journey or battle against hazardous villains (except for the occasional spell of rain).

Nevertheless, there is an adventure lurking for those who seek it. Especially for those with a soft spot for our infamous malts.

That’s right, with the minimal requirement of a car and enthusiastic attitude, you can venture along our great NC500 and explore some of the world’s most renowned malts.

If you’re still wondering what all the fuss is about, Mackays have completed rigorous research into some of these fine gems scattered along the route.


Glen Ord Distillery

Nestled on the outskirts of Muir of Ord, Glen Ord Distillery is one of the Highland’s hidden treasures producing liquid gold all year round. With a welcome as warm as the whisky, Glen Ord offers a range of tours to suit everyone; from the whisky novice to the connoisseur. Our “perilously drinkable” whisky is only available for export only, meaning it’s only available here in our Visitor Centre or in South East Asia.

Out of their selection, the most infamous of drams includes the Glen Ord 12 year old, which offers a sweet, rich flavour with fruity tones.

Tempted? Luckily, the distillery offer a range of tours of the behind the scenes magic which creates this liquid sunshine.

Available Tours

‘Glen Ord’ Tour – £8L Tour of distillery and a taste of our 12-year Singleton of Glen Ord whisky at the end – approx.45 minutes

‘Flavours of Scotland’ Tour – £15: Tour of distillery and 3 whiskies from throughout Scotland – approx.75 minutes

‘Singleton Tour’ – £18: Tour of distillery and 3 Singleton Whiskies – approx.75 minutes

The last tour of the day is the ‘Glen Ord’ Tour, one hour before closing time.

glen ord distillery nc500

Balblair Distillery

Nestled deep in Ross-shire, Balblair comes from a unique location where the pace of life is easy. Their selection of malts are slowly crafted and are matured at the distillery in traditional dunnage warehouses on earthen floors.

Noted for the perfect mix of nature and nurture, you may have noticed a selection of their award-winning malts in Mackays very own cocktail bar!

Available tours:

True Highland Spirit- £10: Both intimate and educational, the True Highland Spirit tour provides a taste of the history and craft behind Balblair, with a sampling of two whiskies

Angels Share – £25: For an enriched guide into the True Highland Spirit, this tour provides a detailed insight into what it takes to produce award winning whisky – with a sampling of four whiskies to be sure!

Balblair 2005

If your inner wanderlust needs a further incentive, the upcoming Highland Whisky Festival provides the perfect incentive to escape into the greatness of Scotch.

From May 10th – 17th,  eight famous Highland distilleries are combining forces to offer a unique insight into the processes and rare collections hidden across the country.

Based in Caithness, we are lucky enough to be neighbours to two of these featured distillers – Old Pulteney and Wolfburn.

May 10th   – Wolfburn Distillery

Operating as the most Northerly distillery in mainland Scotland, Wolfburn’s range creates a palatable adventure, unveiling the mysteries of the Nordic Highlands. This May, they are opening their doors for intimate tours of the distillery and a special bottling in celebration of the festival.

mackays suppliers wolfburn distillers


May 11th  –   Old Pulteney

This May, Old Pulteney will be opening their doors for a series of behind-the-scenes tours of the distillery – with each tour finishing with a wee sample of their most infamous dram, the 12-Year-Old!

If you prefer a greater in-depth experience, Distillery Manager, Malcolm Waring, is hosting a private Whisky Class exclusively for the Festival!

For those who have a soft spot for all things foodie, Old Pulteney are offering the chance to experience the best of food and malts with the introduction of ‘Pulteney Pairings’; an exclusive masterclass comprised of five malt and food pairings.

Old Pulteney Distillery


Now travelling to the far North arguably requires some effort. That’s where we step in.

An ever advocate of adventure and the finest produce, Mackays have created a special package for the Whisky Festival. Not only does our package allow you to rest your head in one of our finest double rooms but enjoy a one of a kind Whisky meal with the No.1 Bistro and Old Pulteney. Indulge in an array of the Highland’s finest produce, with each meal catered to a different malt – with every palatable course guided through the insightful wisdom of Old Pulteney Distiller Manager, Malcolm.

With prices starting from £112.99 per person, save the date for May 11th for a dreamingly dramtastic evening with your favourite home away from home.

If your appetite is suitable intrigued, contact us today for further information regarding availability.

Highland Whisky Festival Mackays Package

© 2021 Mackays Hotel. All Rights Reserved.. View our Privacy Policy & Cookie Policy.