Simon Wittenberg explores the Scapa Noust, Scapa Distillery’s new whisky tasting room, which offers spectacular views of the dramatic Orcadian landscape.
Orkney is an archipelago of 70 islands off the northeastern coast of Scotland and is a popular tourist destination for those seeking far-reaching views, plenty of wildlife, and the Northern Lights when nature permits. Mainland Orkney is also home to the Scapa whisky distillery, originally founded back in 1885.
It has since changed hands multiple times and has even gone into administration and been mothballed during its nearly 140-year history. Today, it is owned by Pernod Ricard, and the distillery opened its first visitor centre in 2015.
Fast forward eight years, and following a significant investment, Scapa Distillery has unveiled its new and intimate whisky tasting room named the Scapa Noust.
‘Noust’ is the Orcadian term for a safe haven for boats, and to bring this space to life and offer an unparalleled whisky-tasting experience, Scapa partnered with the renowned Florian Dussopt Design Studio to create the fantastic interiors whilst they also worked hand-in-hand with local architect Mark Fresson.
Overlooking the natural harbour of the Scapa Flow and the dramatic Orcadian landscape, which can be admired via the floor-to-ceiling windows, the design of the new whisky-tasting destination draws inspiration from the surrounding ocean.
Up to twelve guests can enjoy tastings of Scapa Single Malt whisky around a central hand-carved long table whilst seated under a statement ceiling – crafted in the style of a traditional fishing boat’s interior.
There are also nautical-themed touches from the local area as a reminder of the area’s history, including a traditional naval radio desk donated by an Orcadian, as well as a vintage helmet used by the British navy up until the 1970s.
Furthermore, Cassie stone from across the island has been re-used and repurposed outside, using a technique hailing from Medieval times. There are equally examples of locally crafted and rare Orcadian basket weaves inside the Scapa Noust.
Jacques-Henri Brive, Head of Brand Experience and Advocacy at Chivas Brothers said that Scapa Distillery is thrilled to open the doors to their new Scapa Noust tasting destination. He also explained that the team is proud to have made the vision a reality, with a design that encompasses a modern and fresh interior whilst simultaneously honouring the rich traditions of Orkney that make Scapa whisky what it is today.
Scapa Expands Its Distillery Reserve Collection
Welcoming Single Malt fans and adventurers alike, the tasting room will offer uniquely immersive experiences for those looking to taste exceptional whisky in a spectacular destination, including The Cask Finished Edition, Scapa 19-Year-Old Pedro Ximénez (PX) hogshead finish, which is the latest addition to Scapa Distillery’s Reserve Collection.
There are just 440 bottles of this rich and spicy whisky exclusively at Scapa Distillery and on the distillery website, priced at £185.
The Scapa Noust tasting room – Where and How?
The Scapa Noust tasting room will be open to the public from 4th April 2023. With a new direct connection from London City Airport to Orkney starting this summer, it is now even easier to discover all that Orkney has to offer.
To learn more, please visit www.maltwhiskydistilleries.com, or contact the Scapa Visitor Centre Supervisor Maria Letizia Bardelli at [email protected].
Tasting experiences at the Scapa Noust start from £40 per person.
Scapa Distillery visitor opening times
January to March: Thursday and Friday, 10:00 to 12:00 and 13:00 to 17:00. For visit requests for Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, please email the distillery at [email protected].
April to December: Tuesday to Saturday, 10:00 – 12:00 and 13:00 – 17:00.
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