From the most northerly distillery in Scotland.
Situated on the island of Orkney to the west of Kirkwall, Highland Park is the most northerly distillery in Scotland. It was founded by Magnus Eunson in the late 18th century, one of many Orcadian smugglers and illicit Whisky producers who rebelled against the heavy excise duties imposed to finance the war with Napoleon. It is said that he used his position as church officer to conceal Whisky beneath the church pulpit.
The distillery was licensed in 1826 by Robert Borwick, whose son-in-law, the local Exciseman John Robertson, is generally credited with routing out the smugglers. Highland Park is one of the few distilleries to use hard water. Also unusual is the use of traditional floor maltings for germinating the barley, which is then dried over a fire of local aromatic heather peat. This is the source of the heathery smokiness that is characteristic of Highland Park Whiskies.
Highland Park Dark Origins celebrates the origins of Highland Park back before the official founding in 1798. It celebrates its infamous founder, Magnus Eunson, a butcher and church official by day, a Whisky smuggler and distiller outwitting the excisemen at night. Dark Origins is matured exclusively in Sherry casks, from which 80% are first-fill and 20% refill Sherry casks. This makes for a dark, chocolatey and rich Scotch. Elusive as its founder.