The distillery was founded in 1967 next to the old Brora distillery (first called Clynelish distillery). The distillery was established in May 1968, but was in production in April 1969. To avoid confusion, the first Clynelish was on December 2nd 1969 renamed into Brora. Clynelish has since 1987 belonged to United Distillers and since 1998 to Diageo, but until 1990, the license of Ainslie & Heilbron Malt Ltd and United Distillers Grain (UMGD), with the new name of SMD,
The water of the Highlands / Northern Highlands distillery comes from the Clynemilton water. The malt is made from the Glen Ord Maltings. Clynelish has a mash tub (12.5 tons) of stainless steel and eight wash-backs (58,600 per liter) from larch wood. Distilled into three wash stills (17,000 per liter) and three spirit stills (19,000 per liter), which are heated by steam.