‘Oban’ Gin moves to Ed­in­burgh

The Oban Times - - Front Page -

A GIN-MAKER has plans to cre­ate an Oban spirit in Ed­in­burgh – de­cant­ing wa­ter from Loch Nell at Kil­more and trans­port­ing it to the city.

The owner of Oban Gin and McCaig’s Dis­tillery trade­marks had ini­tially planned to set up a dis­tillery in the town but had failed to se­cure premises.

With al­most 300 peo­ple in the town sup­port­ing former Oban man David Robertson’s as­pi­ra­tions for the brand, some were dis­ap­pointed to find out he would not be open­ing a lo­cal dis­tillery. How­ever, oth­ers are de­lighted the prod­uct may fi­nally find its way into the shops.

Mr Robertson did not re­ply to calls or emails from The Oban

Times, but a post on the firm’s Face­book page said: ‘ Woohoo our premises are now se­cure get the keys this week!’

When Oban Gin re­vealed the prod­uct was not to be dis­tilled in Oban, one per­son asked: ‘What’s the point of that? Surely you owe it to Oban to make the premises there?’

Oban Gin replied: ‘ We’ll be open­ing in Oban even­tu­ally, but most gins do this; get an­other dis­tillery to make for them!’

It was fur­ther stated most gins were made at a larger dis­tiller ‘along with half of the gins in Scot­land, it’s called pri­vate la­bel gin. It’s the quick­est way to get into the mar­ket with­out the huge start up.’

Oban Gin wants to ex­tract the wa­ter from Loch Nell to make the spirit, ex­plain­ing: ‘It’s the source of where Oban gets it’s wa­ter from! Ob­vi­ously your wa­ter goes through the treat­ment plant up by Soroba. So if it’s good enough for Scot­tish Wa­ter to use as a wa­ter source it’s good enough for us.’

In an­other post, Oban Gin said the process would be up and run­ning as soon as pos­si­ble, with the spirit dis­tilled as soon as May.

Ex­plain­ing how the wa­ter will be ex­tracted from the loch, Oban Gin said: ‘Spe­cially de­signed IBC tank in the back of the van works per­fectly. About one trip a month at most. Down the south­ern end of the Loch eas­ily get parked and ex­tract.’

The Oban Times spoke to the Scot­tish En­vi­ron­ment Pro­tec­tion Agency (SEPA) about the ex­trac­tion of wa­ter from the loch.

A spokes­woman for SEPA said it would con­sider any ap­pli­ca­tion for the ex­trac­tion for a dis­tillery but added: ‘We have not re­ceived an ap­pli­ca­tion from any­one, or any busi­ness, about ex­trac­tion from Loch Nell.’

The Health and Safety Ex­ec­u­tive said: ‘Aside from an ex­trac­tion li­cence, there are other con­sid­er­a­tions that any­one re­mov­ing wa­ter for hu­man con­sump­tion needs to con­sider and HSE would be keen to talk to any­one con­sid­er­ing re­mov­ing wa­ter from a loch, trans­port­ing it and then dis­till­ing it.’

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