What Happens When A Silent Whisky Distillery Sings Again? 

The value of a whisky investment is as much about the story behind a bottle as it is about the taste, nose and body of the dram in question, and in recent years the most popular and successful story in the whisky world is Lazarus.

The figure of Lazarus who died and was brought back to life, can be seen through the waking up of silent distilleries that were expected to lay dormant for the rest of time.

A silent distillery is any whisky maker that is no longer in operation, either due to being mothballed or being demolished entirely, with any remaining casks or bottles the distillery made being its only surviving legacy.

There have been several waves of distilleries falling silent over the decades, including the effects of the Great Depression, the enforced shutdown during the Second World War, and the rapid decline of the mass-produced blended whisky industry during the 1980s.

However, from this decline came the rise of the single malt connoisseur, a person who embraces the differences and uniqueness of each still and each regional whisky-making tradition, and during the 2010s and 2020s, this evolved from a small but dedicated following into a gigantic secondary market.

So powerful is this interest in heritage and rare whiskies that it not only leads to some particularly desirable bottles commanding extraordinary prices and the interest of speculative investors but 

also can revive long-dormant sites entirely, as was most recently seen with Rosebank.

Founded in the 1840s, Rosebank Distillery was in its time considered amongst the best Lowland single malt whiskies, but after being bought by UDV (now part of conglomerate Diageo) it was mothballed in 1993, sold in 2002 and much of its original equipment was stolen by 2009.

However, after a change in ownership in 2017 and six years of renovation, the silent distillery completed its first distillation run in 2023.