Three Bottles of Aged Scotch That Prove Youth Is Overrated

It’s only now that distilleries are starting to see the value in allowing stocks to fully mature.

scotch aged whiskey Robb Report
Age is all the rage. Single-malt Scotch more than 30 years old was once a rarity but is now becoming an exciting part of spirits releases from distillers with room in the rickhouse to store those special, long-lived casks, even if a very few bottles can be produced from the surviving supply. The Macallan released just 42 bottles of its 52-year-old expression ($53,500) to the United States in April, and a 70-year-old 1948 Glen Grant from Gordon & MacPhail ($23,000)—the oldest whisky released by that distillery and part of the brand’s Private Collection line—hits the market any minute now.

Meanwhile, exactly one bottle of the Dalmore L’Anima Aged 49 Years is on offer. That bottle, with the brand’s signature dark chocolate–orange flavor, marks another thing to watch in the whisky world: creative collaborations. The project was a joint effort between master distiller Richard Paterson and Italian chef Massimo Bottura. Together, Paterson, who has been watching over the casks since first filling them in 1970, and Bottura, whose Osteria Francescana in Modena holds three Michelin stars, chose the finishing cask for the single malt. It’s being auctioned off by Sotheby’s through May 9 to benefit Bottura’s Food for Soul foundation.

If you’re the underbidder, don’t worry: More old whiskies are sure to follow. “Prior to the 1970s, the vast majority of malt whisky was used in blends,” says Nicolas Villalon, brand education and prestige manager for the Macallan. “It’s only recently that distilleries started seeing value in allowing stocks to fully mature.” Youth truly is overrated.


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