Gordon & MacPhail Releases A Pair Of 57 Year Old Scotch Whiskies - The Whiskey Wash

Gordon & MacPhail Releases A Pair Of 57 Year Old Scotch Whiskies

By Nino Marchetti / October 3, 2018

One of Scotland’s leading independent Scotch whisky bottlers is Gordon & MacPhail. First established back in 1895 in the heart to Scotland’s Speyside region, this firm has released over the last several years, among other offerings, two very high end expressions from their aging barrel inventory – a Glenlivet 1943 and a Linkwood 1956. Now joining these two in what’s known as the Gordon & MacPhail Private Collection is a pair of “twin” whiskies which both herald from the Longmorn distillery way back in 1961.

The Gordon & MacPhail Private Collection Longmorn 1961, according to those behind them, are a pair of limited edition Scotch whiskies being released as a set that explores how two old expressions, both barreled and later bottled around the same time, can age somewhat differently. The primary consideration in what’s turned out to be a roughly 57 year old aging experiment? The barrel type – while both were matured in first fill Sherry hogsheads, Cask 508 rested in European oak and Cask 512 did its thing in American oak.

Gordon & MacPhail Private Collection Longmorn 1961

Gordon & MacPhail Private Collection Longmorn 1961 (image via Gordon & MacPhail)

The “twin”whiskies were selected for bottling by identical twin brothers Stuart (512) and Richard (508) Urquhart, members of the current generation of the family which runs Gordon & MacPhail. The whisky for both of these casks, said to be the oldest Longmorn single malts ever released, were originally laid down to mature by the brothers’ grandfather George Urquhart almost six decades ago.

“As someone whose day-job is applying the family’s knowledge of how to match spirit with the perfect cask,” said Stuart Urquhart, Gordon & MacPhail’s associate director of whisky supply, in a prepared statement, “the nuances of our Longmorns, distilled 57 years ago, were especially intriguing. The whisky I selected has a slightly spicy finish and many would attest that my sense of humour is certainly drier and spicier than that of my brother.”

“For much of our lives,” added Richard Urquhart, Gordon & MacPhail’s international sales manager for Asia and Americas, “Stuart and I have shared similar environments, growing up together, sharing a flat while attending the same university, sailing competitively as a team and now working under the same roof. However, as we’ve grown older, got married and had children, it’s intriguing to see how our individual characters, much like the whiskies, are diverging.”

Each individually numbered and hand blown decanter for these whiskies are presented in a special box, and you’ll find limited official tasting notes for both below. As they come in a set, of which just 97 are being made available, expect to drop £30,000, or around $39,150.

  • Cask 508: Its whisky is a mahogany colour, with red highlights and exhibits a rich, abundant nose, bursting with complex aromatic flavours and perfumed top notes.
  • Cask 512: Rich chestnut in colour, gleaming with ruby and amber highlights. It is slightly sweeter on the nose and fruity on the palate, with notes of black cherry, raspberry, and dried vanilla.