Isle of Bute to launch new venue to support food and drink sector


The Isle of Bute is set to open a new food and drink venue on 4th June to showcase the islands producers as well as the local arts scene. Bute Yard, the brainchild of the late Johnny Bute, the 7th Marquess of Bute, and in partnership with ButeKitchen, and  the Isle of Bute Artists’ Collective, the community project has the dual purpose of developing the Isle of Bute economy and its community through collaboration and answering the needs of the local food and drink sector for growth and expansion.

Bute Yard includes an indoor and outside space set within the historic buildings of Rothesay and includes a distillery operated by Isle of Bute Distillery, a tap room run by Bute Brew Co, the historic Isle of Bute Smokehouse, and a pop-up café and event space which will be open for business year-round.

Bute Yard

The main building opens out into an outside courtyard, which will host monthly markets and events. As well as the monthly markets, Bute Yard will host a calendar of owned and hired events and collaborate with the year-round programme of established island festivals and events.

Cathleen Crichton-Stuart, Director of Bute Yard and Isle of Bute Smokehouse said, “The opening of Bute Yard is a major milestone for the Isle of Bute and the wider food and drink scene in rural Scotland.

“Over the last few years, Bute has experienced an exciting revival in food and drink, thanks to local producers like Isle of Bute Distillery and groups like Bute Kitchen. Bute Yard will play a major role in providing a space that taps into our heritage as well as our future as a successful food destination. The versatile space we’ve created at Bute Yard is truly inspiring and will form a unique and stimulating backdrop for a variety of events and memorable experiences.

“Bute Yard is very much at the centre of a vibrant regeneration on the island, with a vision to establish the Isle of Bute as a food and drink destination and support the growth of local communities and businesses.”

Rhona Madigan-Wheatley, Co-Founder of Isle of Bute Distillery said, “We are delighted to be moving into Bute Yard. It’s been a three-year journey to arrive at this point since we first met with the late Johnny Bute to discuss and create a new venue of this kind.

“Bute Yard is now the permanent home of Isle of Bute Distillery and Bute Brew Co and we are excited to see the catalyst effect this venue will have on other small businesses on the island. For us, Bute Yard has created the platform that allowed us to revive Bute Brew Co after it closed in 2018. It’s the first success story of Bute Yard and we’re excited by what the future of the venue has in store.”