The first whisky company in the UK county of Cumbria for around 100 years is set to unveil its inaugural product next week, while mass production at its distillery is due to start in the Spring.

The Lakes Distillery, located between Cockermouth and Keswick, will launch what it is calling the first 'British blended' whisky at the Taste Cumbria festival next Thursday (26 September). The product, the brand name of which has not been confirmed, has been bottled in Teeside and will have an abv of 40%.

The company has also received planning permission to build its distillery, close to Bassenthwaite Lake. Total investment in the site is expected to be around GBP2.5m (US$4m). A visitor centre and bar is also due to open in time for the Summer, while the company expects to employ around 30 people.

Paul Currie, the Lakes Distillery's founder & MD, told just-drinks today (20 September) that the company plans to produce a single malt whisky and gin, both under the brand name 'Lakes'. He said he expects the whisky to be ready to bottle “within five years, or whenever it's ready”. 

Currie, who previously set-up Scotland's Isle of Arran distillery with his father, also flagged the international opportunities for the new company. “Primarily we'll be an export business,” he said. 

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