Imperial's history is littered with periods of closure, until it was finally demolished to make way for the giant Dalmunach.
Imperial was dogged by poor timing. Its chequered history meant that it never had a chance to become established as a single malt brand. Too late for the very earliest wave, by the time the category was becoming popular in the 1970s it was already committed to supplying fillings. When the single malt market came of age in the early 1990s, Imperial was closed.
Bar one half-hearted Allied Distillers bottling, it has only ever been seen under independent bottlers and, for many years, was also somewhat ignored. Then, slowly, Imperial’s gentle, floral, American cream soda style began to win friends.
While it has not reached the cult status of Brora or Port Ellen, its reputation continues to grow. Sadly, there isn’t much stock left. Bad timing again.
The distillery was demolished in 2013 and a new distillery, Dalmunach, established on the site in 2015.