Bottle of Scotch whisky sells for record price at auction

18 November 2023, 19:34

A bottle of Macallan Adami 1926 whisky on display during a media preview at Sotheby’s auction house in London
Britain Whisky Auction. Picture: PA

Just 40 bottles of The Macallan 1926 were bottled in 1986 after being aged in sherry casks for 60 years.

A bottle of Scotch whisky billed as “the most sought-after” in the world has sold for almost £2.2 million, an auction record for a bottle of wine or spirits.

The Macallan Adami 1926 sold at Sotheby’s in London after a bidding war between would-be buyers on the phone and in the room.

Just 40 bottles of The Macallan 1926 were bottled in 1986 after being aged in sherry casks for 60 years.

Twelve of the bottles, including the one sold on Saturday, had labels designed by Italian painter Valerio Adami.

Another bottle from the same cask was sold by Sotheby’s in 2019 for almost £1.5 million, which until Saturday was a record for wine or spirits.

“The Macallan 1926 is the one whisky that every auctioneer wants to sell and every collector wants to own,” said Jonny Fowle, Sotheby’s global head of spirits.

The bottle sold on Saturday is the first to have undergone reconditioning by the distillery ahead of auction.

This included replacing the cork and applying new glue to the corners of the bottle labels.

The final price of £2,187,500 includes a charge known as the buyer’s premium on top of the sale price of £1.75 million.

The price well exceeded the pre-sale estimate of £750,000 to £1.2 million.

By Press Association

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