The Islay Boys Planning For Islay’s 12th Whisky Distillery

| August 9, 2022

Independent Scotch bottlers The Islay Boys recently announced planning permission for a distillery and brewery building at Glenegedale in Laggan Bay, on Islay.

The application, which was approved by the Argyll and Bute Council, allows the bottlers to advance with plans to build a distillery building to house a traditional, double-distillation Islay whisky.

Dubbed the Laggan Bay Distillery, it will be the 12th whisky distillery on Islay.

Laggan Bay Distillery

The Islay Boys have announced plans to create Islay’s 12th whisky distillery – Laggan Bay Distillery. (image via Islay Boys)

The team will also sport a new building to house a brew kit for their Islay Ales.

The distillery and brewery site will cover two hectares, and sits just opposite of Islay’s airport in the center of the island, and is less than a mile from Islay’s longest beach, the Big Strand in Laggan Bay, from which the distillery takes its name.

Mackay Smith and Donald MacKenzie are both from the Rhinns peninsula on Islay’s west coast, and the two launched their independent Scotch whisky bottling company in 2016.

Currently, The Islay Boys have a range of both blended and single malt Scotch whiskies under their Flatnöse, Bårelegs, and Picti brands. The Islay Boys purchased Islay Ales Company, Islay’s only brewery, in 2018 and have since renovated the beer styles and branding.

As part of the new distillery project, The Islay Boys have partnered with family-owned Ian Macleod Distillers to bring the distillery to life.

A statement from The Islay Boys notes that they have a long-standing relationship with Leonard Russell, chairman of Ian Macleod Distillers.

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“I have known and worked with the Islay Boys for a long time, and I’m delighted to be able to bring our long experience in creating quality Scotch single malts to the Laggan Bay Distillery project,” Russell said.

Ian Macleod is one of Scotland’s largest independent family firms in the spirits industry, and the 10th largest Scotch whisky company in the world. Their portfolio includes Glengoyne, Tamdhu and Edinburgh Gin distilleries, and they are reviving the renowned Rosebank Distillery, which closed in 1993.


Gary Carter

Gary Carter has been at the helm of metro newspapers, magazines, and television news programs as well as a radio host and marketing manager. He is a writer/editor/photographer/designer by trade, with more than 30 years experience in the publishing and marketing field. Gary enjoys working to build something great, whether...