Goodness Nose: Richard Paterson


The legacy of Glen Albyn and Glen Mhor persists in many forms, for Master Blender Richard Paterson, his own family connection to these lost distilleries is explained in his own book on page 75:

'I passed the great trinity of Inverness distilleries, Millburn, Glen Albyn and Glen Mhor. All three were working busily in those days, but now Millburn is the Auld Distillery Slice restaurant and bar, while Glen Albyn and Glen Mhor have been totally obliterated, making way for the Telford Retail Park. I was particularly interested to see Glen Mhor and Glen Albyn, which stook beside the Caledonian Canal, since one of my grandfather's early business ventures had involved selling coal to many distilleries, including these two.'

Published in 2010, the book is well worth picking up and is available via Amazon for a modest £7.49, which is a commission to support our ongoing research. What's particularly stimulating is the detail around Dalmore and its history. Unfortunately, we don't have such a patron as Richard to document Glen Mhor, although he does mention the distillery once more when discussing the Saladin Boxes arriving in the Scotch Whisky industry, on page 88:

'The Saladin malting system had been developed by Frenchman Charles Saladin in the 1890s, and consisted of a long, concrete or metal box, in which revolving metal forks moved slowly from end to end, turning and aerating the grain. However, it took the Scotch whisky industry half a century to embrace this innovation, and the first Saladin boxes were installed at Edinburgh's North British Grain Distillery in 1948. A year later Glen Mhor in Inverness followed suit, with Tamdhu adopting them in 1950.'

Here again, we have the much-debated date of the Saladin boxes, highlighting that Glen Mhor was the first single malt distillery in Scotland to embrace the technology, rather than the 1954 that some sources quote. The date is also mentioned in The County of Inverness by Hugh Barron, published in 1985:

'In 1949 the firm installed mechanical maltings in their Glen Mhor distillery, the first single malt distillery in Scotland to have such equipment.'

I'm hopeful we can put more flesh on the bones when reviewing archived company records in due course.