Someone Spent $1.2 Million on Two Bottles of Old Scotch - The Whiskey Wash

Someone Spent $1.2 Million on Two Bottles of Old Scotch

There seems to be no limit to the depths people are willing to dive into their wallets for certain old and rare bottlings. The latest case in point for this happened recently in Dubai, where an unnamed individual spent over $1 million USD on two bottles of old Macallan.

The approximately $1.2 million spent on these two rare The Macallan Scotch whisky bottles is, according to those in the know, a world record for the most expensive bottlings ever sold. Each one was sold for $600,000 USD by Le Clos, the Dubai-Airport based luxury spirits retailer, to an international businessman for his private collection. To put things a bit in perspective on the financials here, it was noted the bottles originally retailed for £20k, and the last known individual bottle sold in 2007 for $75,000 USD.

Historically, these two bottles hold a special place in The Macallan night sky. Known as The Macallan 1926, they were distilled in 1926 then aged 60 years in sherry-seasoned oak barrels before being bottled and released in 1986. Of the 40 bottles produced, just 12 were given to British artist Sir Peter Blake, famed for co-creating the Beatles’ album cover for Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, and 12 were given to the Italian artist Valerio Adami, (released in 1993) one of the most acclaimed pop artists of the 21st century. Each artist created a bespoke label for the bottles, making them highly sought after by art-lovers and whisky collectors alike. The rare bottles are presented in cabinets, or tantaluses, and are based on the ‘brass and glass’ distillery spirit safe designs.

The recent sale at Le Clos completes what is said to be another chapter in The Macallan’s history as a collector’s whisky – the distillery also currently holds the record for most expensive whisky bottle sold at auction with The Macallan M Imperiale achieving $628,000 USD at Sotheby’s Hong Kong in 2014.

“These represent some of the most exclusive bottles ever produced making this an iconic sale that will be remembered worldwide for years to come,” said Geoff Kirk, Director of Prestige, The Macallan, in a prepared statement. “It is incredibly rare for The Macallan 1926 to be made available for purchase, and the sale offers whisky connoisseurs the chance to secure historic bottles emblematic of 20th century pop culture. The Macallan is renowned for its outstanding quality and this sale demonstrates the brand standing as a leading figure in the whisky industry worldwide.”

About the author

Nino Marchetti

Nino Marchetti is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and provided tasting input on many whiskeys at competitions. He also maintains a large private collection of whiskey from which he continually educates his palate on this brown spirit type.