If ever there were kindred spirits, it’s these two boys.  Between them they have an incredible 70 years’ service at Tomatin and keeping it in the family certainly sums up the MacRae brothers. 

They come from a long line of MacRaes working onsite at the distillery, Evan explains: “Our father worked in the distillery too, as the warehouse foreman - that’s what got us into the industry - before him, our grandfather and our great grandfather before that.” The family link goes even further; the MacRae brothers are cousins of our Head Mashman, Martin Hendry, and their uncle used to run the haulage company that managed our deliveries. 

Growing up on site, they lived at Number 10 distillery cottage and have memories of playing by the Alt-na-Frith burn with several of the local children they have since worked with. It is growing up in these surrounding that gives Ally his understanding of what makes Tomatin the softer side of the Highlands:

“The harsh side of the Highlands is the weather, it can be quite tough at times, so I guess it’s the contrast with the landscape; the rolling hills, soft whisky and soft taste.  There are no sharp features here and that’s reflected in our whisky.”

Evan is now our Head Stillman and Assistant Site Manager, running the stills and ensuring health and safety on site at all times, and Ally is our Lab Technician, overseeing quality control ensuring every batch of our whisky is of true Tomatin quality. 

Having grown up and worked at Tomatin for such a long time, these boys certainly know the locals. 

“They are a committed, loyal and hardworking bunch.  There are a lot of unique characters in and about here, some real personalities.” 

And if they were to describe the whisky,

“That’s easy, one good dram!”