Welcome to our second distillery journal entry. With the busyness of life, it never seems like a good time to take 30 minutes and put pen to paper, but I am really beginning to enjoy the simple act of journaling about our business and having the chance to share our plans with you all.
At the time of writing, it’s Friday morning and we start our new Whisky Tasting Experience tomorrow, so it is with excitement (and a few nerves) that I write our journal entry today, eager to finally open our doors to the public after what feels like an age.
September in the Distillery
We’re so pleased that our Whisky Tasting Experiences are back. We used to call these ‘Tours’, but since Covid restrictions mean we cannot easily socially distance in the previous format, we have decided to give our tours a bit of a rejig. Over the last several weeks, we have been working very hard on a new and improved tour format for you all which is ultra Covid-safe. Our Whisky Tasting Experience launches on Saturday 11 September and will be every Saturday thereafter. Book your visit here.
Upon entering the distillery, you will be welcomed by our founder Greg or one of his team and shown to your table. Before you will be a flight of our whisky expressions, but you must hold back, for we will go through a guided tasting together later on. We begin the session with our brand new entertaining and educational film which shows the full story of Dartmoor Whisky Distillery, from idea to today. The 30 minute video follows the story of our still, our building renovation, and shows you the various stages of how Dartmoor Whisky is made. After the video, you will then be shown through a guided tasting of the three whisky expressions we have released so far, with a chance to discuss with the other participants and ask questions to members of our team. Once the tasting is complete, you will then be given £5 any bottle which you buy on the day to take home a souvenir of your visit to share with friends and loved ones (or not!)
We are back distilling regularly now, and we are delighted to have added several news stockists across the UK, and we are always looking for more.
I recently visited Bath and popped into The Whisky Shop who are interested in stocking our products. It’s a fantastic whisky shop and if you are ever in the city, we highly recommend paying it a visit.
The Distillery Shop is going to open later this month, attached to the side of our distillery and open to the public, the shop will be open on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, 10am – 4pm. Inside, you will be able to see our full collection of whisky, clothing, merchandise, and purchase gifts from our partners and favourite local businesses, such as Dartmoor Brewery and Dartmoor Shepherd.
September in the Fields
The first days of September saw the spring harvest take place by farmer Tim Cox on Dartmoor. Tim grows high-quality barley varieties which are specifically for real ale, which, after being malted at Warminster Maltings, then make their way to Dartmoor Brewery to be brewed into a beer wash to our exact specification.
I recently visited Dartmoor Brewery in Princetown to take part in a mash, working with the team to ensure all is going well and the quality is there. I’m delighted to say it is, and we are so happy to be working so closely with such fantastic and talented local brewers.
September on Dartmoor
The crowds have gone home leaving Dartmoor a little more calm at last. We are still having some fine warm days, but when the thick clouds and mizzle come in over Dartmoor’s high moorland, we are reminded that autumn has arrived. We love this time of year on the moor; it’s a great time for walking and watching the colours all over the vast swathes of land change.
2021 is the 70th anniversary of the designation of Dartmoor as one of UK’s first National Parks, on 30 October 1951. Dartmoor was one of the first places to be designated as a National Park; the Peak District, Lake District and Snowdonia were also awarded the designation in the same year.
Dartmoor’s first occupants were hunter-gatherers and all over the moor you can see archaeological evidence of our occupation of the land, from the first ancient hunting communities, all the way through to today’s hill farmers and visitors. It is this sense of history that makes Dartmoor such an exciting and interesting place to explore.
Arguably Dartmoor’s most hardy animal, the Dartmoor Pony has become the official symbol on the Dartmoor National Park’s logo and also sits front and centre on our bottles. Ponies have lived on the moor for centuries, thriving in harsh winter weather. Seeing the ponies skip around on the moor is so special, so we are pleased to be supporting their future through the Dartmoor Pony Heritage Trust.