The Process

From milling to distillation, every stage in the production of Scapa is overseen by the artisans. Situated on the shores of Scapa Flow, our tiny operation is forged by our environment. And though we are at the mercy of nature, we have also harnessed it to produce a most truly unique single malt.


Unlike other island distilleries no peat is used to dry our malt; this allows the uniquely sweet and tropical flavours of Scapa to come through. Our malt is housed in four sturdy hoppers, and due to the wildly unpredictable weather, they store more barley than bigger distilleries on the mainland.


Water for the mashing is piped in from the nearby Orquil Springs, fed by rainfall from the hilltops. This is when the malt is turned into wort, bringing us one step closer to the final product, and releasing the fruity, honey flavours that make Scapa so unique. Benefitting from this process are the local cows, who are fed the draff, or leftover grains. Some even joke that Orkney beef is so tasty because the cows get happy on their own wee drams.


True to a small and artisanal island malt, all of our whisky is distilled by only a single pair of stills. We are particularly fond of our barrel-shaped Lomond wash-still, the sole survivor of its style used for making whisky. Installed in 1959, it has a wider, taller neck which is ideal for distillation and results in a richer, fruitier new make spirit.


The new make spirit is racked into first-fill American Oak casks, hand selected and brought in from Tennessee and Kentucky. These precious American imports are what brings our single malts their soft vanilla taste. The barrels are then set to rest until our Master Distiller bestows his blessing upon them.