Bonhams Whisky Department specialises in the sourcing and global auction sales of Vintage Single Malt and Blended Whisky and is run by Martin Green who has been the whisky specialist at Bonhams since 2008 after a career in whisky auctions stretching back over 30 years.
He is credited with devising and holding the first ever dedicated whisky sale in 1989. Today, Bonhams holds four whisky sales a year in Edinburgh and four sales in Hong Kong (two of which are combined with Fine Wine). These attract buyers from around the world and regularly achieve sale rates of over 90%
Martin is acknowledged as one of the country’s foremost authorities on whisky and has written widely on the subject.
Notable single owner collections: The Willard S. Folsom Collection, sourced from San Francisco comprising of over 3500 bottles offered in Global sales at Bonhams during 2009 and 2010, the largest whisky collection to appear on the auction market.
The Bowmore Trilogy
The Bowmore Trilogy Black Bowmore-42 year old-1964, White Bowmore-43-year old-1964, Gold Bowmore-44 year old-1964 £17,500 Sourced from a private European collector
Johnnie Walker Old Highland Whisky-Early 20th Century £7,500, sourced from within the UK licensed trade
Johnnie Walker Old Highland Whisky-Early 20th Century Ardbeg-1965 £4,375, sourced from a private Scottish collector
Black Bowmore-1964 Lots 26 £11,875, 27 £12,500 , 28 £11,875, the three bottles sourced from a private UK collector
The highest auction results as of June 2017 for Black Bowmore at auction globally
The Dalmore Candella £16,250, sourced from a private Scottish collector
The Dalmore Candella
The Glenfiddich Janet Sheed Roberts Reserve-1955 £46,850, offered for sale by the distillery on behalf of a Global Charity
The Glenfiddich Janet Sheed Roberts Reserve-1955
Glenfiddich-64 year old-1937 £68,500, sourced from a private European collector
Glenfiddich-64 year old-1937 The current UK auction house record for the sale of a bottle of Single Malt Whisky and the highest price paid at auction for a bottle of Glenfiddich
The Macallan Millennium Decanter-40 year old-1949 £21,250, sourced from a private UK collector
The Macallan Millennium Decanter-40 year old-1949 Bonhams Specialist whisky auctions attract International interest and are held in March, June, October and December in Edinburgh and twice each year in Hong Kong from where the bottles are sourced
Whisky lovers enjoyed a triple treat as independent distiller Glen Scotia rolled out three limited edition single malts as part of this year’s Campbeltown Malts Festival.
The Campbeltown Malts Festival, which this year ran from 22-24 May, celebrates all that is unique and special about single malts from the region. In the Victorian era the town was home to more than 30 distilleries and known as ‘whisky capital of the world’.
Today Glen Scotia is one of just three surviving local distilleries and its award-winning whiskies are known for their distinctive Campbeltown character.
The Glen Scotia 25 Year Old Single Malt, launched during last year’s festival, was recently crowned a Double Gold medal winner at the prestigious San Francisco World Spirits Competition 2018, along with the Glen Scotia 18 Year Old Single Malt, which was also a newcomer in 2017.
Making its debut as part of this year’s event was the Glen Scotia 2000 Single Cask Festival bottling. Selected by a panel which included whisky expert Charles MacLean, just 147 bottles of this beautifully balanced 18 Year Old, which combines maritime notes with a buttery vanilla sponge base, have been made available and they can only be purchased directly from the distillery, priced at £150.
Guests at the Glen Scotia Whisky Dinner, which launched the festival on Tuesday 22 May, each received their own exclusive single malt. The Glen Scotia Whisky Dinner Single Cask bottling was distilled in 2010. It combines subtle peat with a sweet spiciness before a salty and distinctly maritime finish.
The sold-out event, which paired local produce with a selection of Glen Scotia drams, was held at the Ardshiel Hotel. The hotel’s bar is renowned internationally for its extensive collection of single malts.
Finally, making its first international outing at the festival was the Glen Scotia Campbeltown Malts Festival 2018 Limited Edition Ruby Port Finish, priced at £45. Distilled in 2008 and matured in first fill bourbon barrels before being finished in Ruby Port casks for six months, the non-chill filtered liquid was then bottled at cask strength – 57.8% ABV.
Peated and smooth, this limited edition 10 Year Old Single Malt is sweetened by red fruits before delivering a long finish tinged with a dry saltiness. Only 6,000 bottles have been made available worldwide, with orders already in from markets including Germany, Switzerland and Taiwan.
Iain McAlister, Distillery Manager at Glen Scotia, said: “We enjoyed welcoming visitors old and new to Glen Scotia as part of this year’s Campbeltown Malts Festival. It was a fantastic opportunity for them to discover our award-winning Glen Scotia single malts and the distinctive character associated with Campbeltown, which is the smallest of Scotland’s five Scotch producing regions.
“This year’s festival was extra special as it followed our recent double golds at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition 2018. We’ve long championed craftsmanship at Glen Scotia, and our time honoured traditions are now being recognised as more and more people seek to engage with craft drinks and discover new brands.”
In addition to releasing new expressions, Glen Scotia distillery laid on an expanded festival events programme this year.
On Wednesday 23 and Thursday 24 May the distillery hosted dunnage tastings as well as free distillery tours. Cooperage demonstrations and tastings were also available, while local stalls offered a variety of craft items and produce.
Demand for Glen Scotia’s distinctive single malts has soared following the launch of a new Global Travel Retail range and the introduction of the ‘Glen Scotia Grand Tour’, an experiential event designed to offer whisky lovers the chance to experience the essence of Campbeltown.
Held in London’s Borough Market from 15 – 17 March, the Glen Scotia Grand Tour aimed to transport whisky lovers to the Glen Scotia distillery on the Mull of Kintyre and replicate the experience of visiting the distinctive Campbeltown Whisky region. It is set to be rolled out to the US later this year.
Edrington, the international premium spirits company, has revealed the new distillery and visitor experience for The Macallan.
The new distillery and visitor experience is located on the stunning Easter Elchies estate, which has been home to the leading luxury single malt since 1824. From humble beginnings, the brand has risen to become the leading international single malt by value and enjoys leading positions in some of the world’s most significant Scotch whisky markets including The USA, Taiwan, and Japan.
It is the first distillery on Speyside to be designed by an internationally acclaimed architect, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners, who were selected to lead the project after an international competition.
Edrington is investing £500 million in the brand of which the £140 million distillery is the centrepiece. This programme increases investment in whisky, warehousing, and particularly in The Macallan’s signature sherry-seasoned oak casks.
The project was announced in 2012 and the build began in December 2014. The first whisky ran through the stills in December last year and the visitor experience will open its doors to the public on 2nd June. It is expected that visitor numbers will double in the first year and continue to rise thereafter.
The new distillery will enable production of The Macallan to increase by a third if required. The new stills were crafted by Scottish coppersmiths Forsyths, who have been making the brand’s distinctive, ‘curiously small’ stills for The Macallan since the 1950s.
Elgin-based Robertson Construction has delivered the complex architectural design, working with 25 contractors to bring the vision for the new distillery and visitor experience to life. During construction, up to 400 people specialising in more than 20 different trades were employed on site.
The striking piece of contemporary architecture is cut into the slope of the land, taking its cues from ancient Scottish hills and maximising the aesthetic beauty of the building whilst minimising the visual impact on the Speyside landscape, which has been classified as an ‘Area of Great Landscape Value’.
The undulating timber roof structure is one of the most complicated timber roof structures in the world, comprising 380,000 individual components.
Ian Curle, Chief Executive, Edrington, said: “This is an exciting occasion for Edrington and The Macallan. The unsurpassed quality of The Macallan is in high demand and we face the future confidently with this new distillery. It’s an authentic, abiding, ambitious investment that will match consumer expectations for generations to come.
When the doors open in June, we expect this new Macallan enterprise to deliver significant benefits for the tourism industry, Scotch whisky exports, and the economy.”
Ken Grier, Creative Director, The Macallan, said: “As The Macallan has grown globally it has been very important that we make sure we can sustain demand for this wonderful amber liquid. We’ve taken exceptional care in making sure that the spirit that is produced in the new distillery is identical to the spirit that we produced in our previous distillery. This is the beginning of a really exciting new chapter in the evolution of this wonderful brand that is The Macallan.”
Graham Stirk, Senior Partner and Lead Architect, Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners commented: “The Macallan estate truly is a special place; a place we have come to love and respect hugely. The vision was always ambitious but this enabled us to challenge our own thinking to create something so dramatic and awe-inspiring. It has been an honour to play our part in shaping the next chapter for The Macallan.”
For further information visit www.themacallan.com
Family-run single malt whisky creators, Gordon & MacPhail, has announced the launch of ‘Discovery’, a new range that is part of the company’s commitment to strengthen and streamline the brand’s portfolio.
The range of carefully selected whiskies is grouped and colour-coded under three flavour profiles – ‘Smoky, ‘Sherry’ and ‘Bourbon’. Designed to help whisky drinkers to begin an exploratory journey through the Gordon & MacPhail portfolio, each bottle features a brief tasting note and either a vintage or age statement.
The first expressions to be released within the new ‘Discovery’ range comprise spirit originally from Balblair, Tormore, Miltonduff and Caol Ila distilleries, then matured in Gordon & MacPhail’s own hand-selected casks. Prices start from £49.95 UK (RSP) and vary in available markets around the world due to taxes and duties.
Stephen Rankin, Director of Prestige and a fourth-generation member of the Urquhart family, owners of Gordon & MacPhail, remarked: “We’re proud to be the curators of the world’s most diverse stock of single malt whiskies from over 100 distilleries. We’ve spent several years working to develop this new range for whisky lovers globally.
“’Discovery’ offers whisky drinkers the opportunity to begin a journey with us through the Gordon & MacPhail whiskies portfolio. By offering flavour profiles and tasting notes, we want to help the discerning consumer navigate their choices with confidence, beyond their usual malt.”
‘Discovery’ is the second range to launch as part of the updated portfolio, which offers consumers five distinct ranges. The new look ‘Connoisseurs Choice’ range was unveiled last month (April 2018). The additional ranges for ‘Distillery Labels’ and ‘Private Collection’ will be revealed to consumers in the summer and autumn respectively. The launch of the next ‘Generations’ release is yet to be revealed.
For more information about the new ‘Discovery’ range and the streamlined portfolio, visit www.gordonandmacphail.com.
11 May 2018: Auchentoshan® is on a mission to find creative bartenders to join its international bartender collective as it announces the launch of its New Malt Order 2018 competition. Launched in 2016, the New Malt Order is a growing community of like-minded bartenders who share a passion for shaking up the world of single malts.The urban malt from the city of Glasgow, is challenging entrants to create a cocktail that captures the essence of its triple distilled malt whisky and takes inspiration from the bartender’s home city. Successful bartenders will be given the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to visit the home of Auchentoshan® in Glasgow and become immersed in the city’s culture and create an exclusive liquid with Master Blender, Ron Welsh (pictured below). The winners will go behind the scenes at the distillery and select from casks, blend, bottle and even have their say on the final packaging of this rare and unique single malt.
THE ORIGINAL CITY MALT
This year Auchentoshan® will celebrate its urban heritage and challenge bartenders to capture their city’s unique character in an Auchentoshan cocktail. The competition is now open and bartenders from the UK, Canada, Russia, Australia and Germany are being encouraged to enter via Instagram for a chance to become part of the New Malt Order global collective.
Judged by the best in the business, winners of this once in a lifetime experience will be announced in September.
THE NEW MALT ORDER
Launched in 2016, The New Malt Order is not only a competition but a growing global community of passionate bartenders who are pushing boundaries, breaking rules and taking single malt whisky to new places and new faces.
TWO LIMITED EDITIONS
Bartenders’ Malt 01 | Released July 2017
In 2016, the inaugural 12 bartenders from some of the world’s best bars designed a 47% ABV malt to blend in cocktails such as Bobby Burns, Vieux Carré, and the classic Old Fashioned.
Colour: Gold- copper with subtle grassy reflections
Nose: Dried apricots, milk, chocolate, honey and green tobacco leaf
Palate: Delicate floral cherry blossom and buttery brioche undercut by zesty notes of ginger
Bartenders’ Malt 02 | Released later in 2018
Bartenders’ Malt 02, created by 2017’s cohort of international bartenders, will be released exclusively to the on-trade later this year.
Speaking about the upcoming release, Master Blender Ron Welsh, said: “We’ve created a blend that matches bartenders tastes for mixing cocktails. It’s one of the best Auchentoshan®’s I’ve ever tasted.”
Charles Roche from Scout in London, a member of The New Malt Order: “Being a member of the New Malt Order is amazing. We’ve blended a whisky using our bartending expertise specifically for bartenders. It’s the perfect mix for any whisky based cocktail.”
Marco Di Ciacca, Senior Brand Manager, Edrington-Beam Suntory said: “We are excited and proud to announce Auchentoshan®’s New Malt Order competition for the third consecutive year. We are passionate about seeking the best advocates to represent single malt and champion creative bartending on a global scale. We’re looking forward to witnessing how the entrants capture the essence of their city this year and welcome the winners to the home of Auchentoshan®.”
BECOME PART OF THE NEW MALT ORDER 2018
The competition is now open, all entries need to be submitted by Saturday 30 June.
HOW TO ENTER
Enter on Instagram by posting:
To find out more and to enter, visit
Are you of legal drinking age in the country where you reside?
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