Sip to Savour

Argyll & the Isles are synonymous with world-class whisky, but that’s not all. We distil, brew, roast and blend. And we do it really well.

Drinks to Lift your Day

Home to a host of artisan producers, in Argyll & the Isles, we are as proud of our drinks as we are of our seafood, coastline and warm, independent spirit. 

Here, your drink is best enjoyed after a magnificent walk, gazing out over a spectacular vista, or maybe to some toe-tapping live music from local musicians.

Boost your energy with a locally roast strong coffee or a steaming mug of blended tea. Hunker down in a traditional pub around a roaring peat fire and sample our magnificent ales and whiskies. Sip artisan gin looking out over the stunning Lochs and glens.

It’s all part of the Argyll experience. Slainte!

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Dunollie Museum, Castle & Grounds

Dunollie Museum Castle and Grounds is a heritage site international significance situated just 1 mile north of Oban. It is now run by a small independent cha...

Dunollie Museum Castle and Grounds
Ganavan Road
Oban
PA34 5TT

Tel: 01631 570550

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Loch Fyne Oyster Bar & Deli

From the rugged shores of Loch Fyne itself, Loch Fyne Oysters Ltd are dedicated to providing the world with Scotland’s finest seafood. Whether it be from our...

Clachan
Cairndow
PA26 8BL

Tel: +44 (0)1499 600482

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Kilmartin Glen Spirits

Premium Scottish Gin Kilmartin Glen is one of Scotland's richest pre-historic landscapes. It was of profound significance to its people, spanning 5000 years....

PO BOX 9579
Kilmartin
Lochgilphead
PA31 9BF

Tel: 07500 119129

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Coast Coffee

We are a small take Away coffee shop based in Dunoon Town Centre. We sell a variety of coffees and speciality drinks as well as wraps, toasties and bagels. E...

4 Argyll Street
Dunoon Pier
Argyll
PA23 7HU

Tel: 07788 208673

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Oban Chocolate Company

Visit us and experience our range of innovative, unique, fresh handmade chocolates. From the Cranachan Truffles to the sublime Pear william, the smooth and f...

34 Corran Esplanade
Oban
PA34 5PS

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Glen Scotia Distillery

Glen Scotia was formerly known as \'Scotia\' when it was first founded in 1832. The “Wee Toon” was known as the Victorian Whisky Capital of the World. At its...

12 High Street
Campbeltown
Argyll & Bute
PA28 6DS

Tel: +44 (0) 1586 552 288

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Fyne Ales

We are excited to welcome visitors every day 10am-6pm for drinks in the Brewery Tap, sunny afternoons in the Brewery Courtyard beer garden and takeaway beer...

Achadunan
Cairndow
Argyll
PA26 8BJ

Tel: 01499 600120

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The Colintraive

Family run restaurant with rooms focusing on local produce cooked simply. Fresh langoustines and fish from Tarbet, Isle of Bute lamb and beef, local venison,...

Kyles of Bute
Argyll
PA22 3AS

Tel: 01700 841207

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DISTILLERIES
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Glen Scotia Whisky Casks
CRAFT BEERS
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Fyne Ales Tasteofplacetrails.17
TEA & COFFEE SPOTS
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Coffee And Cake
POST WALK DRINKS
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West Island Way 4
DRINKS WITH A VIEW
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Oban Bay Sunset
LIVE MUSIC
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Visitscotland Trad Music
SHOP & STOCK UP
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TASTE TRAILS
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Distilleries - Sip at Source

Visit our legendary whisky, gin and rum distilleries to discover world-class spirits in their natural habitat.

Scottish Spirits

Whether you're a whisky connoisseur, a gin lover or simply interested in our world-renowned heritage, our distilleries offer the perfect serve every time.

Enjoying a Lagavulin single malt in one of the oldest distilleries on Islay can be the highlight of a holiday or a bucket list wish fulfilled. 

Not only do you get to savour the taste, you'll meet the makers and learn a thing or two about how they craft the distinctive flavours. 

Find out more about visiting the distilleries on our Distilleries page.

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Craft Beers & Ales

With three craft micro-breweries, you never need to be far from a good beer. Craft breweries use the best hops, malt and yeast to brew for taste over volume. This gives a flavoursome, complex beer with a spectrum of tastes ranging from pale ale to bitter and black stout.
 
Colonsay is the smallest island in the world with its own commercial brewery. The Colonsay Beer Company (formerly the Colonsay Brewery) was set up to guarantee a regular supply of beer for the tiny population of islanders but has proved so popular that it is now exported across Scotland. It produces three core beers - IPA, Pig’s Paradise Blonde (inspired by the patch of remote grazing where pigs would feast on wildflowers), and the brooding, malty Hangman’s Rock Dark Ale (inspired by the south cliff where executions are said to have taken place). Sample the beers on a visit to Colonsay or, even better, look out for one of the island’s regular festivals for a great all-around experience.
 
Over on Islay, award-winning beer complements the island’s legendary whisky. The mild and moist conditions produce abundant barley from which Islay Ales brew a regular range of beers and ales plus seasonal specials. All are cask or bottle conditioned, without filtering or pasteurising so that the beer continues to ferment and gain ‘condition’ before consumption. Other offerings include Kilchoman Dark or Pale with malted barley direct from Kilchoman Distillery for a smoky, peaty taste, echoing the distinctive notes of Islay’s single malts. For a winter brew, try the Kildalton Ale, a dark beer with hints of ginger and cinnamon - perfect on a crisp, cold day! You can enjoy Islay Ales in pubs and restaurants across the island and The Brewery and Visitors Centre offers guided tastings and wee tours. Visitors comment on the warm welcome, the knowledge and passion of the team, and the quality of the beers and ales. Well worth a visit.

Back on the mainland in Cairndow, Fyne Ales is a farm brewery, set on the Achadunan Estate. Originally set up in an old dairy building, the brewery was established to bring prosperity to this remote corner of Argyll. Demand soon outstripped supply and in 2014, the brewery expanded production with a brand new brewery kit in an adjoining sheep shed. The old dairy and kit remains in use as a workshop for the brewers to test ideas and create new recipes. Fyne Ales now produce a range of core beers, including IPAs and distinctive blonde, amber and dark ales. The flagship blonde ale, Jarl, is the proud holder of CAMRAs Champion Beer of Scotland 2022 award. One-offs and specials – such as the silky Chocolate and Orange Stout or the strong, warming 20th Anniversary Ale – are always popular, and often sell out in record time. Brewery tours are offered at weekends, and sampling is available all week in the Brewery Tap which has a lovely little courtyard for summer days. And no visit would be complete without a visit to the shop to buying a few cans, bottles or mini-casks to take home. You might even find some beef and venison from the farm herds!

Fans of Fyne Ales will enjoy Fynefest - a three-day celebration of beer, food and music which takes place on the Achadunan Estate in June every year. 

CAMRA Pubs

Campaign for Real Ales

If you're looking for real ale in Argyll's pubs, The Oban Inn was awarded CAMRAs Argyll Pub of the Year this year for the fourth year running.

This historic 18th-century inn offers a great range of draft ales, plus over 50 whiskies and over 20 gins. 

The title of CAMRA pub of the year has also been awarded to:

  • Creggans Inn, Strachur (2017)
  • George Hotel, Inveraray (2016)
  • The Barn, Lerags (2015)
  • Kilmartin Hotel, Kilmartin (2014)
  • Fyne Ales' Brewery Tap, Cairndow (2013)
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Tea & Coffee Spots

Argyll & the Isles offer a number of spots to enjoy a steaming hot drink from the best coffee beans or tea leaves. Whether you need to get your senses going first thing in the morning or perk up your energy levels later in the day, good tea and coffee is readily available. Probably with a delicious slab of homemade cake.

For coffee aficionados, a visit to the Argyll Coffee Roasters Coffee Bar at Carry Farm is a must. They source the finest beans from sustainable sources and roast both boutique orders and large batches. The award-winning Argyll’s Secret Roast follows the coffee calendar from north to south for a carefully crafted blend of single-origin beans roasted for sweetness and acidity. For a darker roast profile, try the Clyde Steamer – a full-bodied house espresso. Delicious! The Coffee Bar serves great coffee, coffee kit and retail bags. It’s a delightful place to spend a morning browsing Argyll Botany and The Hayshed Gallery before a stroll along the shore, possibly accompanied by chickens!

Argyll Coffee Roasters coffee is served at select cafés across Argyll. You’ll find it in Glenbarr Stores Café in Glenbarr, Five West and Botanica at the Barn in Tighnabruaich, Lucy’s in Ardfern, The Swallow Café and Coast Café in Dunoon, Kintyre Distillery Café in Campbeltown, and the Slanj Tarbert and Cu Mara in Arrochar.

Campbell Coffee in Inverary on the banks of Loch Fyne is another top spot for coffee. This independent small-batch roastery prides itself on sourcing, roasting and brewing beans for optimum flavour. Voted Best Coffee House 2022 by Restaurant Guru, its house blends are Always Argyll, a medium roasted coffee with a dark chocolate finish, and The Duke, a medium dark blend with a hint of spice. Try the full selection of locally roasted coffees at Campbell Coffee on the main street, visit Brambles Café and Bistro for The Duke blend or Inverary Castle Tea Rooms for the specially created Castle Blend.

Hinba Coffee Roasters in Oban select and roast single origin speciality coffee in the pure Hebridean air. Nip down to their seafront coffee bar for fabulous coffee, cakes and empanadas. And we must give a special mention to their delicious cinnamon rolls! The coffee shop also operates a seasonal pop-up bar serving local gins in the evenings.

For a great cup of coffee on Bute, head to The Brew Bar from The Bute Coffee Company. Here, a couple of streets back from the seafront, you’ll find the best, locally roasted coffee. The house blend is made from beans originating in Columbia and Brazil and has notes of milk chocolate, almond and vanilla. Enjoy with local sourdough toast or one of the signature picnic boxes, and buy fresh bags of beans or ground coffee to take home. The Brew Bar is set in the HQ of Bonnie Bling jewellery company so it’s a nice opportunity for a little retail therapy too!

The small, independent company of Tiree Tea produces unique blends of tea inspired by the language, stories, culture, plants and animals of The Hebrides. The robust Crofter Breakfast Tea gives a good, strong wakeup call while the Machair offers a sweet herbal infusion with subtle citrus notes inspired by the fertile flower-filled fields of the Scottish Islands. Look out for Tiree Tea in most tearooms on Tiree and across Argyll including Kintyre Gin Café (Torrisdale), Polly’s Coffee Shop (Crinan Canal, Lock 10), and Food from Argyll at The Pier (Oban).

Also on the tea front, Annie's Herb Kitchen blends fruit and herbal tea infusions, taking great care to balance the flavours. This naturally caffeine-free tea comes in quirky little tins. There are lots to choose from but our favourite is the Sunset Tea. With its blend of rose petals, sultans, lemon balm, chamomile, sage, fennel and elderflower, we think it's good for the soul! 

Pub Walks (& Cafe's too!)

Pub walks are a staple of most holidays. Tailor the walk to suit your needs (it doesn’t have to be long, and it doesn’t have to be uphill!), enjoy the fresh air, take in some scenery and top it off with a refreshing drink and some good old-fashioned Scottish hospitality.

For a short, easy stroll followed by a pint at The Puffer, head to the harbour at Easdale. You can walk up to the highest point of the island to enjoy superb views across the island and to Mull. The Puffer has a nice outdoor area and offers a good wine list, draft and bottled beers, and a large selection of Scottish whiskies. Food is also served. This is a small family-run pub, so we recommend you check the seasonal opening hours before making a special trip.

The Kilcrennan Inn is a village pub in the Loch Awe countryside, perfect for quenching your thirst after walking or cycling around the loch.  If you just fancy a short walk, you can park at the Inn and go for a wander. For a serious hike, take a short drive to the Loch Awe mountains. Either way, refresh in this popular inn. It has Fyne Ales on tap, a wide selection of beers, ciders, Scottish whiskies and gins and carefully sourced hot and non-alcoholic drinks. It does great food too, but you may need to book in advance.

The Crinan Canal is always nice for a flat walk and offers a number of places for a pitstop. The Crinan Hotel Pub is tucked away in the canal basin and has a cosy stove for wintery days. It offers more than fifty different whiskies and if you get peckish, fish and chips can be ordered as a take-out. At the northern end, The Crinan Coffee Shop offers a wide selection of teas, Caffia coffee and soft drinks. There’s outdoor seating where you can watch the comings and goings of the boats on the locks. Head a little further south and you’ll find the Cairnbaan Hotel. The bar of this charming old coaching inn is open to non-residents and stocks Fyne Ales.

If you've got little ones, head for the Luss on the banks of Loch Lomond. There are plenty of walks and a lovely Faerie Trail complete with faeries, trolls and unicorns! The trail is a mile long after which you can pop into the glorious Loch Lomond Arms for a drink. Recently restored, this old coaching inn has a bar and beer garden and serves bar snacks. 

The Anchor Tavern and Hub on the Isle of Bute makes a great stop on the West Island Way walk – Scotland’s first official island long-distance footpath. It's also handy for walking in Bute Forest. This community-owned enterprise overlooking the sea in Port Bannatyne has a wonderful atmosphere and is everything a wee Scottish tavern should be! During the day, there’s tea, coffee and food, and the tavern offers a fantastic range of cask and keg ales plus local Bute Island gins and beers and numerous malts. The range of ‘grown up’ non-alcoholic drinks is second to none.

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Drinks with a View

Nothing goes together like the tipple of your choice and a stunning view. Thankfully, we’re not short of either! Virtually everywhere in Argyll & the Isles offers a stunning vista. Think calming Lochs, magnificent glens, rugged coasts, lush forests, and pretty fishing harbours. Couple that with a steaming mug of freshly roasted coffee or a fine single malt and life doesn’t get much better. Sit back, sip and enjoy the view!

The Boatshed Café, nestled on the shores of Loch Goil, serves coffee roasted in the Scottish Highlands and the best toasties! You’ll get a superb view over the water, and there are lots of animal houses and feeders dotted around to attract the wildlife so there’s every chance you’ll spot a red squirrel. Plan your boat hire to swing by for lunch or pick up a picnic to eat onboard.

The Machrie on Islay offers roaring log fires and panoramic south-westerly sea views. As you might expect on Islay, it has its own whisky list with offerings from each of the island’s world-class distilleries. The hotel’s golf course is rated 75th in Golf World’s Top 100, and No 6 in Europe by Leading Courses. It’s a wonderful base from which to explore the island. And if that doesn’t convince you, Conde Nast Traveller 2023 described it as “as close as Islay gets to Hebridean seventh heaven”. Well worth a visit!

For stunning views of Oban Bay, drop into the Terrace Bar at The View. It’s a wonderful outdoor setting where you can gaze out to sea and cast your cares away over a cocktail. Sunset is spectacular but you’ll need to get there early or book to bag a table as it’s understandably popular with locals and visitors alike. And the dog can come too!

Drinks & Live Music

Hear the bagpipes, accordion and local talent or join in with a traditional ceilidh or good old fashioned pub sing along!

Macgochans in Tobermory on the Isle of Mull ticks a lot of boxes for a great place for drinks. It sits on the pretty harbour for some idyllic views, has won a host of awards, and hosts local musical talent such as Heron Valley, Ho-Ro, Skerryvore, The Hur, Calum Iain MacCorquodale, Dun Mor Ceilidh Band, Runrig’s Malcolm Jones, Torridon, Gunna Sound and Oban’s Chunks. Enjoy the restaurant bar, beer garden and the charming Bar-beag for Scottish whiskies beside an open peat-burning fire in an original fishing cottage.

The View in Oban is a lively music venue for gigs, outdoor concerts, Scottish music and ceilidhs nights. Relax with a drink to enjoy the sounds of Scotland -bagpipes, accordion and singing - and then get up on your feet for a spot of Highland dancing. Also in Oban, The Oban Inn regularly hosts local musicians and impromptu sessions. 

Thursday nights are music nights at the community-owned Anchor Tavern and Hub on the Isle of Bute. This gem of a tavern offers a warm welcome, good banter and a wide range of alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks. On Thursdays, local musicians bring their instruments for a sing-song or you may be entertained by eclectic sets from local musicians. Highly recommended by all who visit!

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Scotland's National Drink

Whisky - Water of Life

It probably won't surprise you that whisky is the national drink of Scotland.

But did you know that:

  • There are over 100 working distilleries in Scotland
  • 44 bottles of Scotch whisky are exported every second to global markets
  • The Scottish whisky industry directly employs over 11,000 people in Scotland
  • Around 22 million casks of whisky are currently maturing in Scotland - that's about 12bn 70cl bottles!
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Shop & Stock Up

Shop local to support our communities

For a little bit of luxury, stock up your holiday let with a refreshing selection of local drinks or pack up the car to take a taste of your holiday home with you. Many local outlets sell fabulous hampers which make a great thank-you for the folks watering the plants or feeding the cat back home. Even better, you could treat yourself as a way to relive your holiday once you’re back to the daily grind.

Take a look at some of our favourite neighbourhood outlets where you’ll be putting money into local pockets and doing your bit to support the community.

Oban Whisky and Fine Wines are experts in rare and unique Scotch, particularly from the West Coast. You’ll also find a wide variety of local gins, including the aromatic Kilmartin Glen Gin which is created and bottled in a secluded local micro-distillery. It’s a warm and cosy wee shop where you can browse, sample and benefit from the expertise of the staff.

Halls of Campbeltown opened as the retail outlet for Beinn an Tuirc Distillers, creators of award-winning Kintyre Gin. They stock their own gins and rums plus a wide selection of craft beers, fine wines and unique whiskies.

Whisky West Coast in Tarbert was set up to showcase the distilleries of Argyll & the Isles. It’s a treasure trove for whisky lovers, with knowledgeable and chatty staff. In addition to the superb array of whiskies (including first releases, rare bottles, last bottlings and vintage Scotch) there is local gin (including Kilmartin Glen) and sometimes, a few unique offerings such as sample giveaways, gifts fashioned from whisky barrels and signed bottles.

Top off a day visiting the Jail or Castle in Inverary with finely tuned whisky knowledge from Loch Fyne Whiskies. Set in a pretty whitewashed building on the main street, you'll be greeted with a warming dram and the astonishing sight of wall-to-wall whiskies! Whether you’re a whisky novice or a connoisseur, Hamish and the expert staff are friendly and generous with their advice.

Kames Village Stores in Tighnabruaich is an award-winning shop on the Cowal Way. It’s packed to the rafters with local beers, fine wines, spirits, soft drinks and everything else you could possibly need including local organic produce, artisan bread, meats and cheese, and a great selection of vegetarian and vegan options. It’s reasonably priced, has convenient opening times and you can always be sure of a warm Scottish welcome!

Glenbarr Stores in Glenbarr is a great place to stock up. The owners are keen to support local businesses and source most of their products from local or Scottish companies. Here you’ll find everything from your daily paper to unique gifts, as well as a fine selection of local whiskies, ales, gins and coffee.

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