8 Distilleries in Wales That You Need to Visit
Wales is home to a wide variety of fine whiskies and gins. If you’re partial to the odd spirit and want to learn more about your favourite tipple or just sample some new flavours, keep reading as we reveal the distilleries in Wales that you need to visit.
Silver Circle Distillery, Catbrook, Monmouthshire
In the heart of the Wye Valley sits the Silver Circle Distillery. Distillery tours are offered for up to thirty guests at a time. Everything from distilling to bottling, is done by hand. This distillery uses locally foraged botanicals, and visitors will learn more about them alongside the gin-making process.
Group discounts are offered and booking is recommended for large parties, with coach parking available on site.
Coles Distillery, Llanddarog, Carmarthenshire
The ancient village of Llanddarog is home to the family-run Coles Distillery. But don’t be fooled by its humble beginnings – this distillery is actually the biggest craft distillery in Wales.
Visitor tours take around an hour and are available for groups of up to thirty. Each one starts with an introduction of the unique history of the distillery. Guests will also get to taste and smell the ingredients that go into the award-winning spirits.
When visiting the distillery itself, you’ll get to see the whole process, from mashing the whiskey grains to weighing the Carmarthen gin ingredients. Finally, you’ll visit the bar of the White Hart Inn, dating back to 1371, where spirits can be sampled.
Penderyn Distillery, Aberdare
A visit to Penderyn Distillery is an opportunity to taste the ‘finest Welsh whiskey money can buy’. A rare, delicate whiskey, Penderyn Single Malt is definitely something you need to try while you’re there.
Groups of up to twenty can take a one-hour tour of the distillery, seven days a week. The distillery also offers a whiskey tasting class for real whiskey aficionados. This takes around two and a half hours and involves a guided tour of the still and shop floor, as well as a chance to taste some Penderyn Single Malt Whiskies.
Penderyn Distillery also offers a selection of appointment-only evening and corporate distillery tours, available for groups of between 10-20 people.
Cygnet Gin, Swansea
Cygnet Gin has a long Swansea history, with the recipe partly inspired by an attempt at a cure for cholera in the 19th century. Even the titular cygnet is inspired by the Swan – a local mascot for over 800 years.
‘The Cygnet Experience’ costs £49.95 per person and is for over-eighteens only. Tours begin with cocktails at Juniper Place, before being guided behind the scenes to see how the gin is bottled and even how it gets to being retailed. You’ll also receive a guided gin tasting session to learn about three different gins, and upon completion receive a certificate for the Cygnet Masterclass.
This tour takes around two and half hours in total and a maximum of six can take part. Participants will also receive a 20% discount on products in the Cygnet range.
Aber Falls Distillery opened its doors in 2017 and has since won multiple awards for its gins and liqueurs. They prioritise Welsh ingenuity in the crafting process, but that’s not all. Along with other Welsh distilleries, they are working to put Welsh whiskey firmly on the map with a Protected Geographical Indication (PGI) award.
They’re also working to protect the local environment, adopting the sustainable practise of sending waste products on to local farms, for use as fertiliser or feed.
As of May 17th, Aber Falls Distillery has launched its first 100% Welsh single malt whiskey, making it the first North Wales commercial whiskey released in 100 years. Distillery tours are now being offered too. They run between 10am and 4pm, 7 days a week and last for about an hour. There’s also a new visitor centre and bistro to explore.
Cardiff Distillery Gin School, Cardiff
At Cardiff’s first ever Gin School, you get to make your very own gin! Guests distil their own gin, operate their own still, choose their botanicals and then bottle and label their spirits.
While crafting, you get to drink one of their gins, while their distiller explains the process. After you finish, they make you a G&T with your own gin and serve you a delicious platter of food – what more could you want?
Each session takes two hours and they run Tuesday to Saturday. These sessions must be booked in advance. Once made, your gin recipe will be kept on record, so that when you’ve finished your bottle you can buy more.
Dà Mhìle Distillery, Llandysul, Ceredigion
Glynhynod Farm, the home of Dà Mhìle distillery, has been owned and run by the Savage-Onstwedders since July 1981. This Dutch family wanted to set up a self-sufficient and organic farm, later branching out into a whiskey distillery in 1992. But they’re not just all about whiskey – this Welsh distillery makes everything from apple brandy to seaweed gin.
Prior to the pandemic, full distillery tours were available. However, due to current restrictions, they are now holding gin tastings in the 17th Century gallery from 19th May instead. These sessions cost £5 per person and last for around half an hour. Sessions run from Wednesday to Thursday and must be booked in advance.
This distillery, overlooking Cardigan Bay, is all about thinking outside of the box. In the Welsh Wind call themselves ‘maverick brewers’ because they aren’t afraid to be innovative when it comes to distilling fine spirits.
They offer a Gin Tasting experience, with a selection of spirits from some of Wales’ smallest distilleries. The session, which costs £25 per person, begins with a welcome cocktail. Guests get to try three Welsh gins and discuss their characteristics in an interactive tasting at the bar.
This session is also available as a private tasting event for groups of four or more people. For those looking for a more exclusive option, the In The Welsh Wind Gin Distillery Experience costs £145 and is for up to two people sharing a still, crafting a 70cl bottle of gin. Both experiences must be booked in advance.
Why not soak up all that whiskey and gin with a delicious meal courtesy of one of Wales’ Michelin star restaurants? Or, if you’re an ale drinker after all, check out our list of Welsh breweries with tours and classes you don’t want to miss.