Many visitors to the distillery ask me why we don’t call our whiskey “Scotch”. I usually have a two-part answer. First and foremost, legally we cannot refer to our product as Scotch whiskey, as that is a term reserved exclusively for whiskey produced in Scotland. But just as importantly for everyone to understand is that, even if we could call our products “Scotch,” we would choose not to. Our decision to produce single malt whiskey is not borne of a desire to simply replicate the exceptional whiskies produced more than 4,000 miles away. Rather, it is driven by a belief that we must make a product that reflects the distinct character of the place we call home, the Pacific Northwest.
That character is equal parts geographic and cultural. The Pacific Northwest is without a doubt one of the best barley growing regions in the world. Our region is also renown for its truly magnificent water, the lifeblood of a fine whiskey. Our lands contain rich and varied landscapes, which not only make it one of the most strikingly beautiful places in the world, but also furnish us with unique microclimates ideal for maturing whiskey. For centuries, the West has been marked by a culture of innovation, determination, self-reliance and creativity that has melded with a respect for this landscape and a commitment to sustainably steward its bounty (a principle inherited from the native peoples who first inhabited the region). It is simultaneously cutting-edge and old world, subconsciously informing our every thought and influencing our every action.
So goes the story of Westland. We are compelled to create products that express a sense of place, both its raw materials and its ideals. The western, cutting-edge culture is manifested in how shape those raw materials into spirit, something that is evident in each and every bottle of Westland American Single Malt Whiskey. As our forefathers did before us, we’re constantly pushing ourselves forward, understanding more and more how this place wants to speak through whiskey. It’s in our pursuit of progress that we were first led to Garry oak