A new category for 2023, Andy is the first person to take home the global title in the 17-year history of the awards.
Andy has been coopering for more than five decades, having completed his apprenticeship in 1973. In his nine years with Loch Lomond Distillery he has worked on approximately 50,000 casks, and over the course of his 50-year career he has helped train five apprentices in the craft.
Andy previously won ‘Cooper of the Year for Scotland’ at the regional awards, before progressing to take the global title.
Judges praised Andy’s 50-year career as a cooper and his commendable work in helping to train and upskill future generations in the craft.
Loch Lomond Whiskies is one of just four distilleries in Scotland to have an onsite cooperage. This is essential to the creation of Loch Lomond Whiskies’ signature spirit, helping to ensure that barrel repairs and charring are carried out to an exacting standard so every cask is perfect.
A symbol of its unwavering focus on quality, Loch Lomond Whiskies’ Cooperage 021 was also awarded the ‘Cooperage of the Year’ title for Scotland in the regional heats.
The panel highlighted that very few distilleries maintain an active cooperage, while even fewer retain so many functions – commending Loch Lomond Whiskies’ expert team of coopers for going above and beyond to rebuild and charr casks, stating Cooperage 021 was ‘by far the most impressive distillery cooperage.’
Bill White, Group Operations Director at Loch Lomond Group, said:
“To be internationally recognised as a leading figure in the industry is testament to Andy’s care, commitment, and skill. Coopering is a traditional craft which takes years to master. At Loch Lomond Whiskies we’re proud to play a part in preserving this important element of Scotch whisky heritage.”
Run by the team at Whisky Magazine, the Icons of Whisky awards aim to celebrate the best and brightest people and places in the sector.
Learn more about our cooperage.