Lindores Abbey is widely recognized as the Birthplace of Scottish Whisky, with the first written record of Scotch.
The site for the new distillery is within an existing farm steading complex on land thought to have formed part of the historic abbey grounds. The adjacent ruined abbey is a Scheduled Ancient Monument.
Design work on the distillery started in 2015 with a detailed site study, given the amount of archaeology in the ground any new buildings for the distillery were ruled out. A refurbishment of existing ruined steading buildings was proposed.
The existing buildings had attractive traditional features such as pantile and slate triple ridged roofs. These have been raised and rebuilt in crisp modern versions of the same materials. Our intention was to maintain the time honoured character of the old buildings, and to work with their curious geometry.
The three sided steading is now organised into reception area, production area and link. Each area has an individual character. The reception is highly fitted out as a brand home for the new whisky.
The production area is designed to be one of the most beautiful still rooms in the industry, with three bright copper pot stills overlooking the ruins of the abbey through frameless glazing. It is a tall, airy and well ventilated space.
The link leads from reception to the production area, and is fitted out to tell the story of the abbey. It has become an extraordinary function space. An arched roof is formed from new glulam columns which form a regular structure. The curve is finished externally with graphite curved zinc. The geometry of the arches is taken from Louis Kahn’s Kimbell Art Gallery – a three curve arch rather than a simple semi circle. The result is a space which echoes the existing Abbey of Thiron.