Orkney Distilling was launched in 2016 by husband and wife team Stephen and Aly Kemp. Based in Kirkwall, the capital of Orkney, the couple wanted to create a range of spirits use local botanicals and celebrates the heritage of Orkney. With the help of the Agronomy Institute from the University of the Highlands and Islands, they started researching different local botanicals to perfect their recipe. Orkney Distillery was then opened in July 2018, sitting on Kirkwall's harbour front. The flagship Kirkjuvagr range underwent a rebrand in late 2021 and is now presented in a custom bottle.