High spirits: Distillery creates Scotland's first 'tequila' - in all but name

A Scot born in Mexico has added a Caledonian twist to 'tequila' - except it can't be called that as it was made in Scotland.

Kirkcudbright’s Dark Art Distillery creates Scotland’s first ‘tequila’ – in all but name Dark Art Distillery

Scotland’s most southerly distillery has created the country’s first tequila – in all but name.

Dark Art Distillery was established in Kirkcudbright by Andrew Clark-Hutchison, a Scot born in Mexico, after he left a 28-year career in finance to take on the drinks industry.

Having already impressed in the industry with award-winning gins, he has now created Scotland’s first 100% blue weber agave spirit, named Vespero, to coincide with International Dark Sky Week.

However, the spirit cannot be found under the name tequila. 

Much like Scotch whisky, which has to be produced in Scotland, tequila has to be made in Mexico.

Andrew explains: “As the spirit was not distilled in Mexico we cannot call it tequila as Mexico owns all the rights of provenance, however, we use only organic 100% blue weber agave, yeast and water to make Véspero.  

“It tastes like you would imagine with our master distiller Gerard MacLuskey using his skill and judgement to create a Caledonian homage to tequila with a very smooth finish, it is vibrant with sweet grassy and toffee notes with a cosmically smooth and warming peppery finish.”

The name of the drink, Vespero, translates to Venus in astrological circles, and it was born and bottled under one of only six dark sky communities in Scotland – the Galloway Forest.

The forest, which covers approximately 20% of the park, has been set aside as a central core for preservation of dark skies and wildlife, with a policy of no permanent illumination.

Andrew added: “On International Dark Sky week, what better time to launch Scotland’s first ever blue Weber agave spirit – Vespero which links closely to the sky’s above Kirkcudbrightshire where it is created.”

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