New Whisky Aging Warehouse Opens Up In The Arctic

| April 3, 2021

Aurora Spirit, as we’ve written about in the past, is considered the northernmost distillery in the world, located north of the Arctic Circle. To date they’ve been aging their whisky in former NATO/WWII underground bunkers, but word recently came down they’ve opened a new warehouse above ground to deliberately face more exposure to the Arctic elements.

The new Aurora Spirit aging warehouse, according to those behind it, has a design that is based upon a modern Viking warehouse, having been constructed in massive wood by local builders on solid rock foundations. One unique feature of this facility is said to be the turf roof, reportedly “harping back to traditional Viking / Norwegian buildings.”

More specifically, the turf, “planted with local grasses and wild flowers, protects the building from the direct sunlight in the summer and insulates the building in the winter. The inside is almost cathedral like with strong arches from floor to ceiling supporting the structure, subtle and atmospheric lighting also adds to the experience.”

Aurora Spirit aging warehouse

The new Aurora Spirit above ground aging warehouse (image via Aurora Spirit)

It is said the “design is not only based on efficient and effective maturation temperatures and air flow for the casks, but also designed to be a unique visitor experience.” Elements good for visitors include a viewing area to see the maturing casks and a tasting zone/bar area that allows for trying some distillery exclusive whiskies or enjoying a dram drawn directly from the cask.

Temperatures can be extreme in the Arctic with winters to minus 17 Celsius and summers, although short lived, peaking just above 20 degrees Celsius. Given this, some experimental maturation is going on, and lurking in corners of the warehouse one might find some Sauterne casks, Mezcal, Rum, Rye, Madeira and many others.

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Nino Kilgore-Marchetti

Nino Kilgore-Marchetti is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and...