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The Most Expensive Whiskey in the World: Top 10 List

Have you ever wondered what the most expensive whiskey costs? We're here to tell you the 10 most expensive whiskies out there.

Whiskey has long been one of the most popular alcoholic beverages and is most often thought of as a 'man's' drink. It is made from grain mash and the most common grains used to make whiskey in the wide variety of brands, are corn (maize), rye, barley and wheat.

It is made in a variety of classes and types (like Craft Irish Whiskey), but one thing that is a common thread is the process in which it is made, such as the fermentation of grains or distillation and aging it in wooden barrels.

Whiskey can vary widely in its prices. Expensive whiskey is often drank alone, but can be mixed with other alcohols or mixers and is one staple you will find at most any bar. Whether you are a whiskey connoisseur or just curious about the costs of pricey whiskeys out there, here is a list of the 10 most expensive whiskey bottles in the world.

10. Dalmore Selene 58 Year Old 1951 - $35,000

This is a 1951 whiskey, 58 years old and was named after "the Titan goddess of the moon." The theory behind it is that "sunlight burns, but the moonlight shines." Thirty bottles of this whiskey were made and its flavors have been described as grapefruit, mandarin and subtle hints of lime. This is the tenth most expensive bottle of whiskey and it sells for $35,000.

9. Balvenie 50 Year Old 1912 - $42,000

This is a 50 year old single malt whiskey that was bottled only a few years ago, in 2012 into 88 beautiful bottles. This is a whiskey that holds its roots in Speyside, Scotland where it sat in cask number 5576. The distillery was built in 1886 near the Balvenie Castle, where Master blender David Stewart is one of the longest serving masters in the industry. He is revered as pioneer in the industry, creating the maturation technique that uses two casks, which distilleries around the world are using today. And he is the first master to use sherry casks during the aging process of whiskey. This particular whiskey sells for $42,000.

8. Dalmore 62 Single Highland Malt Scotch Matheson 1942 - $58,000

This whiskey comes from a distillery that was build by Alexander Matheson back in 1839. This whiskey was named after him back in 1942 and there were ten other bottles that come from the same bottling, but were given different names. On the bottle, you will see a 12-point stag emblem which stems from royal history. This bottle has a price of $58,000 and made the list as one of the priciest whiskeys in the world.

7. Glenfiddich 1937 - $71,000

This particular bottle of whiskey has a flavor of treacle, burnt leather, cedar, oak and chocolate and beams of an antique bronze and rich walnut color. This whiskey hails from cask #843, which happens to have been laid down back in the year of King George VI's coronation. Over the years, many master whiskey makers have cared for the cask and today, only 61 bottles are still in the world but all of them have been sold off in auctions throughout the years. This whiskey is worth $71,000, one of the fmost expensive bottles of whiskey ever.

6. The Macallan 1926 - $75,000

This is a 1926 vintage whiskey that is a first in the Macallan lineup and is rare; it is the whiskey that starts the Macallan's line of liquid distillation history. One of the Macallan 1926 vintage's sold in an auction back in 2007 for $54,000, while another sold in South Korea for $75,000 in 2005. The vintage 1926 was hand-bottled back in that year and is unfiltered, giving it more characteristicin its flavor. This bottle is worth $75,000, one of the most expensive whiskeys, ever.

5. Springbank 50 Year Old 1919 - $78,000

This is a bottle of whiskey that you can find online and purchase any time without having to attend an auction, like you have to for most other expensive whiskeys. It has been described as one of the rarest single malts ever distilled and there have only been 24 bottles of the whiskey ever created. It's even been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as one of the most expensive whiskeys to ever be sold, so if you want to own one of the rarest and most expensive, all you have to do is add to your cart on the website and pay a small price of $78,000.

4.  Glenfiddich Janet Sheed Roberts Reserve 1955 - $94,000

For under $100,000, the Glenfiddich Janet Sheed Roberts Reserve 1955 whiskey's flavor has been tested by Globe and Mail and was said to be extremely light and almost mesmerizing in its flavor. The straw-gold color is a beautiful display of the barley flavor that shines through with soft hints of hay, pear and heather. A property develop from Atlanta, Georgia purchased the bottle of 46 year old whiskey for $94,000 and is one of the most expensive bottles of whiskey ever sold.

3. Yamazaki 50 Year Old - $133,999

The Yamazaki 50 Year Old whiskey hails from the Suntory distillery based in Japan which is the country's oldest distillery. A signature malt from there, it is referred to as a "multi-layered with fruit and Mizunara aromas" whiskey. The flavors have been said to subtle yet weighty and will give you both a spiritual and deep whiskey experience. The whiskey comes in multiple years outside of the 50  year old. It's also available in 12, 18, and 25 vintages for whiskey lovers who do not want to pay above $100 grand per bottle. The 50 year old is worth $133,999. Definitely an expensive bottle of whiskey.

2. The Macallan 64 Years Old in Lalique Cire Perdue 1946 - $460,000

The Macallan 64 Years Old in Lalique Cire Perdue 1946, obviously also a Macallan brand, is 64 years old and it was set in its bottle in honor of Rene Lalique's 150th birthday. A Lalique decanter it was bottled in was made by using the lost wax or what is known, as the investment casting technique. Macallan wasn't trying to create 'just a bottle,' they wanted it to be a piece of art that would not be forgotten. It was sold at Sotheby's auction in New York in 201o for $460,000, which is the second most expensive whiskey in history.

1. The Macallan “M” - $628,205

The most money ever paid for a bottle of whiskey was for the Macallan "M" bottle of whiskey, which was sold at a Sotheby's auction in 2012. This whiskey is the holy grail of whiskies and has the warm flavors of wood smoke, green apple, raisin, and cinnamon. There were seven barrels that made up this whiskey and these seven were chosen from 200,000 original barrels of whiskey that ranged in age from 25 -75 years old. The whiskey was placed in a bottle that was hand blown. When it was being made, 40 bottles were destroyed due to imperfections. When they got it right, the whiskey and its bottle were deemed perfect. The "Constantine" decanter it sits in, was given its name after the Roman emperor of the same name. This whiskey sold for $628,205 at the auction as is the most expensive ever recorded in the history of whiskey.

So there you have it - the most expensive whiskey bottles ever. Would you ever purchase one? If whiskey is your preferred beverage, consider saving up for a taste from one of these someday! And even if whiskey is not your preferred beverage, there are several fascinating facts about whiskey that are worth learning. Who knows, it could be an excellent conversation starter you need one day when chatting over a few drinks.

Along with drinking expensive whiskey often comes other expensive hobbies, such as traveling to expensive places, owning expensive vehicles, and even dressing in expensive clothes. All of these things are an individuals prerogative, so no judgment whatsoever on your choice! But one thing is for certain: if you have the chance to taste the most expensive whiskey ever made, don't pass up the opportunity.

Life is short and therefore should be lived with full intension and passion for your hobbies and interests. Not a fan of drinking whiskey? Consider a non-alcoholic wine instead.



Maria McCutchen

Written by Maria McCutchen

Maria McCutchen is an author and freelance writer living in Chattanooga, TN. She is the published author of her memoir, “It’s all in Your Head,” and a children’s book. She has been writing for over 15 years; writing articles, whitepapers, product write-ups and more for multiple online media sites, blogs, company websites and individuals. She is also an advocate for brain malformations, including Chiari Malformation, and works closely with the non-profit organization, The Chiari Project, writing for their quarterly newsletters.

Read more posts by Maria McCutchen

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