The Boby Mill
Rosebank was always a remarkable whisky thanks to the way it was produced, and we are committed to restoring the distillery in order to revive its incomparable spirit. The three pot stills and the traditional wooden worm tubs that helped make it so unique are being replaced, but one vital piece of equipment will be original.
The Boby mill has been an unsung hero of the Rosebank distillery since 1936. Its job at the start of the production process was to crush the malted barley into the perfect consistency of grist for making the wash that was then distilled. Year after year its twin rollers ground up vast quantities of grain until the distillery closed in 1993.
It originally arrived second-hand from the Port Ellen distillery on Islay which closed in 1930, and its precise age is a mystery. The Boby mill at the nearby Islay distillery of Ardbeg dates from 1921 and is still going strong. They are incredible machines and beautifully engineered with their rollers, sprockets, chains and gears.
However, because the mills never needed replacing, Robert Boby Ltd eventually ran out of business and closed in 1971. Its engineering works in Bury St Edmunds was bulldozed into history and now lies buried beneath a supermarket, but its famous mill lives on.
Rosebank’s Boby mill really was built to last, just like those in other Scotch whisky distilleries. After a full service and spot of oil, it will be back to work, as good as new.