Without a doubt the most confusingly named Malt distillery, Glenesk was established in the east coast town of Montrose in a converted flax mill in 1897. Like many distilleries established at the end of the 19th Century, the distillery went through several changes of ownership over its lifetime.
The distillery was originally known as Highland Esk before it became North Esk. It closed during the First World War and had a fire in 1919, resulting in it converting to a maltings only. In 1939 it converted to a grain distillery under the name Montrose, before converting back to a malt distillery in 1964 and being named Hillside. The site then became known as Glenesk in 1980, before finally ending Whisky production in 1985 and reverting to its former role as a maltings.