January Auction Highlights 2018
First of all we would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year and trust you had a relaxing festive period. We hope you enjoyed all of our auctions we put together in 2017 and we will strive to keep bringing you a fresh selection of interesting whiskies throughout 2018!
Kicking off our first auction of the year we have yet another Cask Held In Bond. Our oldest cask to date; a Macallan 1989 refill Sherry Hogshead that will currently yield approximately 257 70cl bottles. It is worth remembering that this year the new Macallan distillery will open to the public. As full production commences at this new distillery, the original Macallan distillery – where this very cask was distilled back in 1989 – will cease production. Leaving aside the arguments about the implications of this decision, the fact remains that this is a scarce opportunity to acquire a cask of Macallan from the original distillery – a liquid that some may come to consider increasingly historic and valuable in light of these aforementioned forthcoming developments. On top of this, this particular cask has spent its entire life maturing on site at the distillery. Something which adds that extra layer of history and romance to what is, most importantly, an excellent whisky in its own right.
On to bottled liquid. The Johnnie Walker Celebration Blend makes a warm welcome. This whisky was created by Johnnie Walker Master Blender Jim Beveridge in 2005 to celebrate the 200th anniversary of John Walker’s birth. The blend was created from 9 component whiskies aged from 45 to 70 years. These bottles were never sold publically and were instead gifted by Diageo to people deemed to have made a ‘significant contribution to modern life’. As a result almost all remain in private hands or have been consumed. This rather spectacular bottling remains the holy grail for Johnnie Walker collectors and an exquisite rarity for any whisky lover in its own right.
We have a great selection of whiskies from Gordon & MacPhail’s portfolio. Many of which are from years gone by where you will find all their best stock. Gordon & MacPhail are one of the oldest and most well known independent bottlers and offer some spectacular whiskies that you will only find in the likes of auction. In this sale you will find a mind boggling 70 year old Macallan distilled in 1945 from their Speymalt series, along with a 55 year old distilled in 1950. These are both single casks. We also have a 1967 & 1973 from the same series. Their Connoisseurs Choice range is represented by a 1965 Ben Nevis, 1966 Kinclaith, 1967 Glenglassaugh & a 1968 Glenburgie. From the 1970s there’s a 1970 North Port-Brechin, 1971 Port Ellen, 1972 Dallas Dhu, 1974 Ardbeg & a 1975 Caol Ila. Finally from the 1980s you will find a 1980 Macduff, 1981 St Magdalene & a 1982 Brora. We also have the very scarce Royal Marriage series which were distilled in 1959 & 1960 to commemorate the marriage of Prince Andrew to Miss Sarah Ferguson in 1986. We’ve never seen this set in one single sale before, so, if you’re missing one or two don’t miss this opportunity. Other G&M bottlings to look out for in this sale are a pre-war Glen Grant distilled in 1936, another 1957 Talisker from their CASK series; this is the last bottle from this particular vendor. And finally a very rare 1966 Scapa.
Old Malt Whiskies
On the left we have a rather rare and well preserved Glenturret bottled in the late 1960s. Official bottlings from this period are few and far between these days so if you’re looking for one in mint condition, this is a perfect opportunity.
On the right and from the same vendor we have a very beautiful and pristine 10 year old Glen Grant bottled by Moray Bonding in the 1950s. Moray Bonding was a private limited company established in 1947 and like Gordon & MacPhail they held a license to bottle Glen Grant as a single malt on behalf of the Distillery.
Featuring for the first time in one of our auctions is a bottle of Glens Extra from around 1970. The label reads ”Pure West Highland Malt Whisky Distilled & Bottled By The Springbank Distillery”. This is quite a rare variation of Glens Extra bottled by Robert Watson of Aberdeen. The vendor has an identical bottle open and mentioned it’s a very nice old Springbank. Lastly we have a Cardhu from roughly the same period. These older Cardhu’s are generally very waxy, mineraly and flowery with all kinds of old style complexities. All these older whiskies are well worth the experience if you’re lucky enough to get your hands on them.
Released in 2012, the Old Pulteney 40 year old is the oldest official release to date. The whisky was drawn from a Spanish ex-sherry & American ex-bourbon at healthy 51.3%. The liquid sit’s in a unique hand blown decanter where a skilled craftsman has blown silver waves into the glass while the metal was still molten.
Alongside the 40 Year Old you will find the 35 Year Old. Released in 2014 this one spent its life maturing in American Ex Bourbon & Spanish Ex Sherry Casks. Only 1350 bottles yielded at 42.5%. The bottle is presented in a wooden box with a latch lock and porthole to represent the distilleries maritime connections.
This is a particularly special bottle of Macallan and up until 2018, it was the only official age statement 40 year old released by the distillery. With only 450 bottles ever produced – many of which were opened and consumed – makes this an extremely scarce opportunity to acquire this rather legendary bottling.
A stunning sherry matured 1946 Macallan that, due to the lack of coal in the post-war years, is remarkably peaty. An exquisite dram and increasingly hard to find.
Don’t forget to have a look through all the wonderful old blends. We have examples from Black & White, Haig, Old Parr, White Horse and a very obscure over 7 year old Famous Grouse along with the run of the mill you can pick up for a great price.
All the best from all of us here at Whisky Online Auctions.