Christmas Auction Highlights

Well 2016 is now drawing to a close which means it’s time for our 2 week Christmas sale. It’s been a great year here at Whisky-Online Auctions in terms of the array of old rare and obscure whiskies we have uncovered. The only downside is a number of miles we have racked up in the van! One of the best parts of putting these sales together each month is meeting the people who have these wonderful old bottles and the stories behind them, and of course, it’s a buzz to be able to offer the great whiskies we find to all our members around the world. Every day is different which makes what we do so unique. So for the last time in 2016 here are a few sexy bottles that will be highlighting our Christmas sale… for those who follow us on Facebook will know we have uncovered another bottle of the Port Ellen Queens Visit “ the holy grail of Port Ellen” Scoring a whopping 99 points by a famous French man.

Port Ellen 12 Year Old - Queens Visit - 1980

This is both the only known bottling of Port Ellen produced while the distillery was active and the only known example distilled in 1967. It was decided that a bottling should be done for the occasion of the Queen’s visit back in 1980. The whisky was selected and drawn from two 1967 Hogsheads by legendary warehouseman Iain ‘Pinky’ McArthur. The number of bottles produced was very limited, enough that one could be given to the Queen and to each of the councillors and senior staff present on the day. From our knowledge it is believed that only 36 bottles were filled. The bottling strength remains unknown but Iain McArthur insists it was bottled at cask strength without reduction. This particular bottle comes from an ex-distillery worker who acquired the bottle over 20 years ago when he was actively working in the whisky industry and it has been stored away until we collected it just recently.

Highland Park 50 Year Old - 275 BottlesHighland Park 50 Year Old - 275 Bottles

Appearing for the first time in our auction since 2012 is the mighty 50-year-old Highland Park; a vatting of five casks filled in 1960 and it’s believed that those casks were then transferred and aged together in a single cask for further maturation. Released back in 2010 this is still the oldest official Highland Park on the market and rarely ever appears at auction. Each bottle is hand-crafted from sterling silver and designed by Maeve Gillies. The design was inspired by the wild and rugged natural elements of the Scottish island of Orkney, Maeve aimed to create a bottle that would visually communicate what made Highland Park unique without any words, as well as an object that was precious enough to be worthy of the oldest island single malt in the world.

Dalmore 50 Year Old Crystal Decanter - Bottle Number 50

Also featuring for the first time since 2012 is the 50-year-old Dalmore. Bottled back in 1978 this is regarded as the best Dalmore ever bottled and probably the best 50-yearold in the world. It’s also bottled at a hefty 52% which is very unusual for such an old whisky. Only 60 hand-cut crystal decanters were produced making this one of the hardest whiskies to find. Adding to its rarity this is bottle number 50 and hand signed by master blender Richard Paterson. Not only do we have the 50-year-old Dalmore above but we have another Dalmore 50-Year-Old except this one is a little more special. Only one of these bottles exist and it was presented at the 5th Habanos Festival by Whyte & Mackay & The Whisky Magazine in 2003. The decanter is presented in a unique wooden box with a humidor containing 50 Cohiba Robustos Cigars. This one is definitely worth having a look at even if you don’t plan on bidding.

Aberfeldy 1985 - 28 Year Old - The Gold Of Pitilie - One Of Only 10 Bottles

Last but by no means least is a unique bottle of Aberfeldy 28-year-old “The Gold of Pitilie” believed to be the oldest and rarest commercial bottling in the distilleries 120-year history. Adorned in 22-carat gold with “lost-wax” casting, and a stopper featuring flakes of Scottish gold, the name derives from the distillery’s water source “Pitilie Burn” which is known for its deposits of Scottish gold. Bacardi assured that no more of the 1985 cask will ever be released, thus “guaranteeing this edition’s rarity”. 10 Bottles were created with 8 bottles going to the far east exclusive to Travel Retail, one remains in their archive. This the very last bottle which was destined for an event that never took place.

Along with these incredible whiskies, we have an exciting array of other whiskies ranging from 1930s Irish Whiskey to pre-prohibition bourbon. You will also find a fine selection of good aged whiskies from Macallan, Port Ellen, Bowmore, Ardbeg, Glenmorangie, Highland Park and Springbank to name a few.

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From all of us here at Whisky-Online Auctions we wish you Merry Christmas and a very prosperous New Year to all.



November Auction Results

Another month and yet again the prices are still flying high.

A weak pound is good for UK sellers but frustrating for those of us trying to buy. Whether this current upward trend will continue or maintain itself is yet to be seen. But if there is a re-balancing against the Euro (as seems likely) and the Dollar in the coming months then it seems likely that prices may soften again. In short, it’s still a good time to sell for UK buyers. Anyway, on with the results…

The demand for Black Bowmore continues unabated as ever, no doubt helped by the recent announcement of the new 50 year old expression, the 42 year old 4th release hit a healthy £8200. The newly released Macallan 40 year olds both fetched a notch above their initial retail price with a hammer of £6000 and £5900 respectively. Elsewhere in the upper levels of the sale there were similarly hefty results for Macallan with a pair of 1958 Anniversary Malts hitting £2700 each and – perhaps even more impressively – a 1970 and 1966 Anniversary Malt at £2250 a piece. Not so long ago these were £800-1000 bottles. Likewise multiple early 18 year old vintage bottlings finished up around the £1700-1800 mark showing this series well and truly cementing itself at this new trading level.


One of the real highlights for Macallan lovers this sale, however, was the full case of 1958 80 proof bottled early 1970s by Gordon & MacPhail. Beautiful whisky in beautifully classical bottles. Naturally the ones that held their filling levels performed the best at around £2000 each.

Moving away from Macallan though, perhaps the biggest surprise of this sale was the 1972 Brorageddon bottling which finished up at a whopping £5300. This is legendary whisky and further evidences the immense appetite there is for whiskies from this distillery and this vintage in particular. Being one of the only dark sherried expressions of Brora 1972 it is understandable how fiercely these bottles are now fought for. Still, one sold a couple of weeks ago for £3900 and to see it outstrip that price so quickly was quite remarkable.

Moving further down the sale there was no shortage of other impressive, and often left field, results. A Midleton 1988 fetched bang on £1000. There are of course collectors for this series but this is a remarkable result nonetheless. Goes to show that when a bottle is missing from more than one collection then competition can be ruthless.


Other strong results were the Glenmorangie 1963 at £1000, the Glenlochy 1969 25 year old Rare Malts at £975 and the new Lagavulin 25 year old already up at £925, no doubt this bottle has a strong future at auction. A very rare 1988 Caol Ila ‘Manager’s Challenge’ of which only 35 bottles were produced fetched an impressive £725 and a Highland Park Thor was back up around £525 showing that this series is likely on the rebound.

Other impressive results were £525 for a Macallan Cask Strength bottled around 2000, £430 for a Ledaig 1972 Connoisseur’s Choice and £400 for the Kilchoman 100% Islay Cask Strength. Nice to see Islay’s newest (for now) distillery getting some solid auction results.

The majority of results in the mid-range of the auction – like most recent sales – were otherwise consistent and solid with few apparent bargains to be had. One or two bottlings such as the 1965 Duncan Taylor 40 year old Tomatin seem like a good price at £280 but it’s really grasping at straws trying to find glaring bargains amongst this lot.

Below the £120 mark there was still a solid amount of excellent drinking whisky for fair prices but again the overall story is one of consistency and generally upper market value. Next month is the big Christmas auction so we’ll have to wait and see what that brings in terms of prices, at the moment it looks like the current levels will hold for a while longer. How long is anyone’s guess but if you’re thinking of selling though, now seems like a good time to do it.


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Annual Extended Christmas Sale!
If you’d like to get your bottles into the Christmas sale then we’ll be accepting entries up until the 21st of December. So don’t hang about if you want to take advantage of what is usually one of the highlight auctions of the year in terms of quality of bottles and prices achieved.

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November Auction Highlights

Welcome to the only Whisky auction where every bid is a potential winning bid! Our pre-Christmas sale is bursting with a wealth of old, rare and obscure whiskies. With so many to mention, we won’t bore you with a long list but instead mention a few that stand out from the rest.

Macallan 1958 Among the many exquisite whiskies available in this sale; we have unearthed nine bottles of Macallan 1958 that were stored in a farm office under a pile of paperwork for the past 40 years. The vendors father originally purchased them from the Derby Co-Operative sometime in the 1970s. The outer box mentions these are a 15 year old so they would have been bottled around 1973. With 3 bottles being consumed the remaining 9 bottles have survived untouched until it was recently discovered. All nine bottles including the case itself are offered for sale in this auction. After this sale there will be no further opportunities to acquire these bottles from this batch.

The Caol Ila Managers Challenge was a small bottling created as a result of a competition held back in the early 2000’s. The idea was that a number of the distillery Managers who’s whiskies went into Bells 8 year old blend were invited to submit samples. These were judged by a group of leading drinks writers who after consideration chose the Caol Ila entry which was very fitting as the event was held at that particular distillery. The photograph attached to this Lot, which appeared in the Scotsman newspaper is Master Blender Gordon Bell with the range of whiskies entered for the final judgment. This is a great opportunity to acquire a single cask, cask strength Caol Ila that indirectly wouldn’t exist unless such exercise took place.

Another rare find from World War One in the form of an Old Mull Blend-bottled in 1917. The label states Thoroughly Matured, A Blend of Old Tobermory And Other Fine Scotch Whiskies. To say this bottle is just short of 100 years old, it is in terrific condition and looks very drinkable. This is an outstanding piece of liquid history and is a once in a life-time dram!

The Brorageddon Single Cask by Douglas Laing was selected by a bunch of American connoisseurs and whisky nuts called ‘The Plowed Society’. The majority of these were sold through The Whisky Shop at an inviting £99. Today the Brorageddon is only talked about and is virtually a mythical bottle as they rarely come to market.

Bowmore Auction Highlights

Bowmore is represented in fine fashion starting with the 42 year old Black Bowmore along with 43 year old White Bowmore, both from the epic year of 1964 and both, of course, form part of the renowned trilogy series. We have one of only a handful of official Bowmores from the 1950s; A 38 year old distilled in 1957, this is one of the most exotic and tantalising whiskies from this great distillery and is now becoming increasingly hard to find. Last but in no means least we finish off with the legendary Bowmore Bicentenary a vatting from some of the oldest stocks available at the time stretching back to 1950s through to the mid 60s. This is mind-blowing juice, once you’ve tried these magical Bowmore’s theres no going back!

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As always good luck and happy bidding from all of us here at Whisky Online Auctions.


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