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Article published 08/08/2023

The Argyll and Isles Tourism Cooperative has launched a new Whisky Year Zero commemoration to mark the 200th anniversary of the 1823 Excise Act, which was published on 18 July 1823.

The act, which sanctioned the distilling of whisky in return for a licence fee, played a key role in shaping Argyll and the Isles as Scotland’s Whisky Coast. This is an area which encompasses four of Scotland’s recognised whisky regions – Campbeltown, Islay, Highlands (Oban and Loch Lomond) and Islands (Jura and Tobermory).

It recognises the significance of the year, particularly to Argyll’s one-time 'Whisky Capital of the World'. Whisky Year Zero celebrates the destination’s distinct whisky heritage.  It showcases the wide range of sites, festivals and experiences whisky lovers can experience in Argyll and the Isles from July 2023 to June 2024.

This includes brand new distillery openings, such as the reopening of the historic Port Ellen Distillery on Islay.  This is more than 35 years after it was closed and almost 200 years since it first opened in 1824.

Throughout Whisky Year Zero, Glen Scotia, one of three distilleries remaining in Campbeltown, is offering immersive whisky experiences.  It take visitors behind the scenes and back in time, to discover more the history of their whisky. The tours include how the Excise Act led to their hometown town being proclaimed the one-time Whisky Capital of the World.

Though there are less distilleries than there once was in the area, whisky and now gin production is still a significant industry across Argyll and the Isles, as Whisky Year Zero highlights.

The commemoration showcases 14 world-class whisky distilleries, a myriad of whisky experiences, festivals and distillery openings across the destination.

You can read the full press release on the breaking Travel News website.

To find out more about Whisky Year Zero visit the Wild about Argyll website.

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