We use cookies to track visitor statistics and personalise adverts. This info is shared with Google. Only use the site if you agree to this. OK, I agree

Glenbuchat Heritage

19 Greybeard whisky bottle
The Glenbuchat Image Library
19 Greybeard whisky bottle

Greybeard whisky bottle.

A ‘Grey Beard’ is a stoneware drinking jug with a long neck; decorated with a caricature of Cardinal Bellarmine (17th century)

There is a report of a Roadside Inn ’ in Glenbuchat in the early 1800’s.

Mary Ann Kellas who became Mrs Pirie, is reported to have said in an interview on her 90th birthday:

Her Grandfather, John Kellas, owned the roadside inn there, and also she’ll tell you with a smile, “His own still which he kept in the hills. It must have been well hidden because he was never caught. Maybe that was because he always kept a stone greybeard of whisky for the gauger vein he called.”

Glenbuchat was famed for the illicit distilling of whisky; Glenbucket whisky was reputed to be as good as Glenlivet over the hills. Glenlivet became legitimate and flourishes to this day, but the Glenbucket trade was stopped by the excisemen (gaugers). When they appeared in the district, the news was flashed through the glen and the ‘worms’ were hidden away, until one day (so the story goes), disguised as women, they surprised the distillers at work.

The first taxes on whisky production were imposed in 1644, causing a rise in illicit whisky distilling in the country. Around 1780, there were about 8 legal distilleries and 400 illegal ones. In 1823, Parliament eased restrictions on licensed distilleries with the "Excise Act", while at the same time making it harder for the illegal stills to operate, thereby ushering in the modern era of Scotch production.

Picture added on 10 September 2011 at 00:03
Please add your comments about this picture using the form below.


Your Name

Your email address - this will be shown on the page and will allow the system to notify you of further comments added to this picture.

09. PhotoStore

18 Cruck Frame Building17 1750 Map of Milton16  Aberdeen Asylum & Dr William Reid15 Professor Robert Reid14 Major Gen Sir Alexander John Forsyth Reid13 Book by Rev Scott's brother in Law12 Profesor Nisbet at Upperton11 Mary Hardie10 James Hardie9 Horse Engine