First Kilchoman Racked Warehouse completed

In a video posted on Facebook today, Kilchoman founder Anthony Wills unveiled the distillery’s newly built first Racked Warehouse.

In the past, Kilchoman had always stored its casks in so-called “Dunnage” warehouses; all five Kilchoman warehouses to date are of this type, in which the casks are stored three rows high on a tamped floor.

The new Racked Warehouse on 31 March 2022 shortly before its completion

After Kilchoman had massively increased its production in recent years, the decision was made to build a number of so-called “Racked Warehouses” for reasons of space and efficiency.

Anthony Wills on the newly built road. The new warehouse at the back left.

The first of these new warehouses, which has now been completed, can hold up to 8,000 barrels on eight levels. The advantage of racking is that the casks can be stored much higher and can be stored and retrieved more efficiently when they are needed for bottling. The problem with the Dunnage Warehouses, on the other hand, is that if you want to retrieve casks from them, you have to break the hole stow down and then restow it.

From the next few weeks, the new warehouse is to be filled primarily with bourbon barrels. In the future, another Racked Warehouse will be built every one and a half to two years to keep up with the increased space requirements.

Before the first new warehouse was built in the southeast corner of Rockside Farm, Kilchoman first had to build a new road to connect the distillery with the warehouse site. Forty thousand tonnes of coarse granite were quarried from a hill directly behind the distillery to be used for the foundations, the hardcore for the warehouse site and the road. This was much more effective and environmentally friendly than taking the stones from a quarry on the other side of the island.