DEWAR'S origins date to the mid-19th century. Founder John Dewar was born in 1805 in the small village of Dull, near Aberfeldy, Scotland, where he grew up on a farm. After an apprenticeship as a joiner, he moved in his early 20s to Perth, where he began working for his uncle's wine and spirits wholesaling firm. He became a partner in 1837, but in 1846 decided to go into business on his own and began blending whisky from several different producers to give it a mellower flavor. Dewar was one of the first to sell his beverage in a glass bottle with the brand name embossed on the front, rather than in a ceramic container.
John Dewar Senior passed away in 1880 and was succeeded by his sons John Alexander and Tommy. It was Tommy who made the name of Dewar known world wide. He was an extrovert and showman whose escapades were not appreciated by his competitors, but by 1894 his enterprise had established 32 agents in no fewer than 26 countries. By this time, the firm had built a new headquarters next to the railway station in Perth from which a private siding led to their premises. Accordingly, Aberfeldy Distillery was also built next to the railway. Built by the Dewar family in 1898 on the edge of Highland Perthshire, Aberfeldy Distillery produces a fine and sophisticated Highland single malt Scotch whisky. Reserved for years as the heart of DEWAR'S blends, limited quantities of Aberfeldy single malt whisky are now available.
DEWAR'S celebrated its 160th anniversary in 2006. And, today, the Company owns five distilleries: Aberfeldy, Craigellachie, Brackla, Aultmore and MacDuff. All produce whisky for DEWAR's blends, as well as limited-edition single malt scotches.
More than a century and a half after its namesake began blending whisky in Perth, Scotland, John Dewar & Sons, Ltd. continued to produce fine distilled beverages. The firm's flagship brand, DEWAR'S White Label, was the best-selling whisky in the United States and also popular in other countries around the world. With the backing and distribution muscle of new owner Bacardi, the company appeared well-positioned for many more years of success.
DEWAR'S had traditionally purchased whisky for its blends from other producers, but in 1898 the company opened a distillery of its own in the small village of Aberfeldy. John A. Dewar sees that, to meet growing demand, the firm must be able to guarantee the supply of a superior quality Highland malt whisky for use in the Company's blends. Aberfeldy is designed from the ground up as a model distillery. It relies upon a water source, the Pitilie Burn, which has been used for distilling for centuries. The Distillery is linked by railway to the Company's Perth headquarters.
Soon after the opening of Aberfeldy Distillery, the company introduced Dewar's White Label Scotch. Hand crafted by DEWAR'S first Master Blender, over one hundred years ago, DEWAR'S White Label is a blended Scotch Whisky of unusual subtlety and refinement. Up to 40 of the finest malt and grain Scotch whiskies are blended together in perfect harmony, to create this time honoured blend. Our Aberfeldy single Highland malt, with notes of Scottish heather and honey, is placed at its heart to ensure this whisky is smooth and perfectly balanced. It is no surprise to learn that this is the number 1 selling Scotch whisky in the USA today.