Scotch is Scottish whisky. There are some kinds of scotch whisky made using malted barley, which are called single malt whisky, but there are also other kinds of scotch whisky made using other kinds of grains, which are called single grain whisky. However, most examples of modern scotch whisky are blended scotch whiskys, meaning that they are mixed from both single malt whisky and single grain whisky. Regardless, there are very strict rules in place that determine whether something can be called scotch or not, which are very similar to the rules for other regional specialties. As such, scotch can command a premium on the open market, not least because of the towering brand that has been built up by the centuries and centuries of Scottish whisky-makers who have preceded their modern counterparts. In turn, this means that there have been some very expensive scotch whisky sales, so much so that they demand attention. Here are 10 of the most expensive scotches in the world:
10. Glenfiddich 1937 – $71,700
There are various factors that can contribute to a higher price for scotch whisky. For instance, a smaller number of bottles tends to lead to higher prices because that means that there is less supply with which to satisfy the existing buyer interest. In turn, this means that older batches can command higher prices, both because there are fewer bottles and because of the perceived value of their increased age. Based on the name, it should come as no surprise to learn that Glenfiddich 1937 is very rare, so much so that there are fewer than a 100 bottles that can still be found in existence. Combined with what is said to be notes of chocolate, molasses, and burnt heather, this has pushed the price of a single bottle to $71,700, which is rather impressive to say the least.
9. Springbank 1919 – $78,000
Once upon a time, Springbank 1919 was listed as the single most expensive scotch whisky that could be found in the entire world. That is no longer the case, but a single bottle of this scotch whisky was nonetheless capable of fetching $78,000, which might not seem like much compared to some of the other bottles on this list but is still a colossal sum.
8. Glenfiddich Janet Sheed Roberts Reserve 1955 – $94,000
In 2012, a single bottle of this reserve managed to sell for $94,000 in New York City. In part, this is because just 11 bottles of this reserve were ever made, meaning that it is very rare indeed. However, it should also be noted that it is named for Janet Sheed, who was the granddaughter of William Grant, who in turn, was the man who founded Glenfiddich. It is interesting to note that Sheed managed to live to be 110 years old before passing away in 2012, which presumably had an impact on the final sale price.
7. Dalmore 64 Trinitas – $160,000
The Dalmore 64 Trinitas was made by blending not just one but a number of rare whiskys. In fact, it should be mentioned that some of the whiskys that went into it came from the 1860s and the 1870s, which explains why just 3 bottles were ever made.
6. Dalmore 62 – $250,000
Speaking of which, the Dalmore 62 gets much of its value from the same source as the Dalmore 64 Trinitas. However, it also comes in a crystal and platinum decanter, which contributes a fair amount to its value as well.
5. Macallan 64 in Lalique Cire Perdue – $464,000
This scotch whisky was blended from three different batches from the 1940s. However, it gets much of its value from its one of a kind decanter, which is made out of crystal designed by the French luxury glass maker Lalique.
4. Macallan M – $628,205
On a related note, Maccallan M is another excellent example of a Maccallan product that has managed to fetch a high price based on its container as well as its virtues as a scotch whisky. In the first case, the container was handcrafted with the involvement of no fewer than 17 experts, which explains much about its value. In the second, the scotch whiskey was blended using product from throughout the 20th century.
3. Macallan 1926 – $1.1 Million
In recent times, the rarest scotch whiskys have been shooting up in value, not least because there are now more people interested in competing for such products than ever before. As such, many of the most expensive sales of scotch whisky have happened in recent times, with an excellent example being a bottle of Macallan 1926 that managed to sell for $1.1 million in Hong Kong in early 2018. The whole incident was particularly notable because the expected sale price was just $525,000, meaning that the final result exceeded the expectations of even the people who would know about such things.
2. Macallan 1926 – $1.53 Million
However, it is amusing to note that a second bottle of the same batch managed to sell for $1.53 million later in 2018. Something that might have been impacted to some extent by the earlier sale of the $1.1 million bottle. In any case, while this is a rare scotch whisky from the early 20th century that is stored in a container bearing an actual work of art by the Irish artist Michael Dillon, the price is still so high that it is almost unbelievable.
1. Isabella’s Islay – $6.2 Million
None of the other scotch whiskys on this list can compete with Isabella’s Islay at $6.2 million. However, this isn’t because of the contents but rather the container, seeing as how said scotch whisky is stored in a decanter of white gold that has been decorated using thousands and thousands of gemstones. As such, even without its contents, the container would still retain much of the value.