Brora distillery was built in 1819 by the Marquis of Stafford, it was originally known as Clynelish. A 'new' Clynelish distillery was built on a neighbouring plot in 1968 and the original site was closed. The 'old' Clynelish distillery was reopened in 1969 and its name was changed to Brora. In 1975 a law was passed banning two distilleries from having the same name.
Brora distillery produced a heavily peated malt through the 1970s until peating levels were reduced in the early 1980s. Brora was mothballed in 1983.
In 2017 Diageo announced that Brora distillery is to be rebuilt in its original buildings and would reopen in 2020.
The 202 year old Victorian distillery has been restored in order to recreate the Brora spirit to what it was in 1983. The original pair of Brora stills have been refurbished and the stillhouse was rebuilt using original Brora stone. Brora will use a traditional rake and gear mash tun and use malted barley from Glen Ord maltings, exactly as it did in 1983. Master Blender Dr Jim Beveridge OBE has sampled old stocks of Brora and referred to historic tasting notes to build a picture and reverse-engineer the production process. The Brora distillery has however adopted modern technology and plans to be a carbon neutral site powered entirely by on-site renewable energy.