SIX city businesses will be competing for the title of Favourite Business of the Year award in October.

One of them will win the coveted title, which is sponsored by the Evening Times and is part of the Glasgow Business Awards 2018, which are organised by Glasgow Chamber of Commerce.

The awards' main sponsor is Royal Bank of Scotland.

Today we profile the final two nominees for the accolade of Glasgow's Favourite Business - the Glasgow Distillery Company and Dear Green Coffee Roasters. The other four, all highlighted earlier this week, are Princes Square, The Garage, DF Concerts and Piece.

Voting opens today. Simply go to - and cast your vote for the business you would like to see win. The closing date for votes is August 10.

THEY flooded in from all over the world - Japan, America, Hong Kong, Australia, Mexico and Taiwan, as well as from Europe and all parts of the UK.

Applications arrived from whisky enthusiasts hoping to be included in a ballot to buy the first 5000 bottles of a new, Glasgow-made whisky, the 1770 single malt.

The 5,000 lucky applicants were then given the chance to purchase one bottle each, at £100. The whisky will be in their hands in early November.

It's another success for the Glasgow Distillery Co, which describes itself as "the city’s first new independent single malt distillery in over a century."

"The ballot was massively oversubscribed, which was absolutely fantastic," says co-founder Mike Hayward, a co-founder of the company. "We sold out the bottles literally in days, which means that our first bottling of 5,000 is all accounted for, which is superb news.

"It's quite overwhelming in many ways, too," he adds. "You never quite know how your first release into the world is going to go. To get that level of support from all over the world is magnificent, bearing in mind that we are still a relatively young distillery based in Glasgow.

A ballot will be opened for the release of the 2019 peated 1770 whisky.

The Glasgow Distillery had already made a number of successful gins, including the award-winning Makar Original Dry Gin, before launching the 1770 whisky.

The company invited a number of Glaswegians to its distillery for the first official tasting of the 1770, and some of their vivid descriptions in their tasting notes - "green apples", "biscuit", "marzipan", "freshly cut grass" - have been reproduced around the neck of the new bottles.

"We wanted to use these words, which come from the people of Glasgow. This is what at the heart of what we're trying to do," Mike added. "We're proud to be based here and part of the Glasgow community."

He's proud, too, of the efforts that went into giving the 1770 bottle a distinctive design.

"The bottle is part of the experience. When you buy something, you want the product to look good before you even get to taste it.

"The bottle is quite a heavy piece of glass, there's a nice bit of weight there. The label has really nice embossing on it, there's a bespoke closure on the bottle. You go through that ritual before you pull the cork out and get the aroma of the whisky itself. It's a process that consumers like to go through.

"I hope people open the bottles and drink the 1770 as opposed to keeping them unopened," he adds with a laugh. "I've done it myself - when you buy a bottle, you think, right, that's the first one, I'm going to keep that, and buy another one to drink.

"But we want people to open the 1770, we want people to enjoy it for what it is."

The company is expanding in the meantime, and is to install two new stills and seven new washbacks in an effort to double its capacity.


FROM supplying top bars, cafes and restaurants to serving a cold brew coffee to Arctic Monkeys at the TRSNMT festival, Dear Green Coffee Roasters has been making its mark across Glasgow and further afield.

The company, which is based in the city's East End, was formed by Lisa Lawson seven years ago and is a coffee roaster and supplier of exclusively 'specialty' grade coffee beans from all over the world, from countries as diverse as Peru, Rwanda, Burundi, Brazil and Colombia.

An "ethical and social conscience" is, it says, evident in everything it does.

The company also runs classes in barista training and stages special coffee events, as well as offering for sale home brewing bundles for coffee.

Lisa herself is just back from a working trip Brazil. "It was really educational," she enthuses. "It was very nice to meet exporters and coffee farmers and a lot of people who are passionate about the same things but who are in a different part of the supply chain.

"I started the company in 2011, mainly because I was super-passionate about coffee. I used to deal with coffee in Australia and when I got back to Glasgow there was no great coffee. It took me a while to establish Dear Green Coffee. It was a leap of faith for me to break out on my own but it has really worked out.

"We're in year seven now and I think the the culture of coffee has changed massively across the world as well as across the UK, Scotland and Glasgow. People now are a lot more discerning and interested when it comes to coffee than was the case years ago.

"When I started out there was no competition for me, so when I started out it was like introducing a new style coffee for everybody. I has to say it has been a really great journey."

The company is careful not to overload the range of coffee it offers at any one time. "It depends on what's in season," adds Lisa. "We don't want to have too many on our list. We want to have a nice range of origins and flavour profiles and different preferences.

"You can get really floral and fruity coffees and from central and south America you can get chocolatey, nutty coffees. You get quality differences all over the world.

"I would say that our unique selling-point, our USP, is that we're always in touch with the coffee farmers to ensure complete traceability of origin. We aim to know as much about the farm as we possibly can, and the ethics behind production. We also have a really short supply-chain so that more money is going to the right people along the chain.

"We get the coffee when it's in season and we roast it specially on our premises."

The company started out supplying cafes and bars across Glasgow but now operates nationwide. It does sporadic pop-ups at markets and other events, as well as hosting the Glasgow Coffee Festival, which began in 2014.