There are few greater delights than a perfect bottle of whisky, particularly to the hedonistic whisky connoisseur. Old and rare whiskies hold incredible value and ought to be enjoyed and savoured before too much is given to the angel's share. But, from big name Scotch distillers to emerging Japanese craft brands, there’s much to choose from and flavours can vary wildly depending on region, maturation and ageing method.
We've rounded up some of the finest and rare whiskies available to buy now. If you're looking for something more affordable this World Whisky Day, check out our pick of single malt whiskey and be sure to shop our edit of whisky decanters and whiskey glasses for the ultimate serve.
Glenfiddich Spirit of Speyside
A purchase of compassion, Glenfiddich will be releasing 450 bottles of an exclusive 13-year old whisky via the Whisky Auctioneer, with 100% of the proceeds going to causes affected by Covid-19.
Each bottle has its own identity number between 1 and 450 and has been signed by Glenfiddich's Master Distiller, Brian Kinsman, chosen to honour the annual Spirit of Speyside Festival, which was ultimately cancelled for 2020.
The auction will run from 17 June - 22 June at whiskyauctioneer.com
Port Ellen 40-Year-Old
For a bit of history from a now closed distillery, this Port Ellen 40-year-old os just the ticket. It is one of the oldest and rarest releases ever to be made available direct from the Port Ellen distillery. The whisky is a blend of nine casks of original Port Ellen stock, in four American oak hogsheads and five European oak butts, creating a unique Port Ellen unlike anything from the distillery before.
With only 1,380 bottles of this release available to the public, this collector's piece is a steal.
The Macallan 52 Year Old (2018 Release)
Like gold dust, this is just one of 255 bottles. Aged in first-fill European oak sherry seasoned cask the 52-year-old comes in an oak presentation box.
Nose: Leather, polished wood and furniture polish, it’s like an antique shop in here. There’s also walnuts, cooked peaches, dried apricots and dates.
Palate: Full creamy texture, oily even, with savoury notes of leather and tobacco, joined after some time with sweeter fudge, chocolate and vanilla with a touch of wood tannin and some dark cherry fruit.
Finish: Long; to begin with its pepper and orange peel but the lingering taste is sweeter, chocolate and salted caramel note that goes on.
Balvenie 56 Year Old 1962
This 56-year-old was released as part of the The Balvenie DCS Compendium Chapter Five, a collection which honours malt master David C. Stewart MBE, and features whisky picked out by the man himself. A limited run of only 90 bottles make this one exclusive whisky.
Nose: Fragrant fruity and honeyed, ending on a delicate spiciness.
Palate: Rich, velvety with toffee, honeycomb, vanilla, orange peel and ginger.
Finish: Sweet, citrus and gentle spices.
Glenlivet 64 Year Old 1954
Having spent six decades in single refill sherry casks, Gordon & MacPhail bottled it up in 2018 for the Private Collection. Only 222 bottles were released and the whisky comes in a wooden presentation box.
Nose: Initially sweet with hints of brown sugar, toffee apple with light herbal aromas. Cinnamon and aniseed notes add depth, whisky thick fruit jam, lemon curd and vanilla undertones linger.
Palate: Silky smooth and mouth coating. Thick golden syrup mingles with stewed fruit, rum and raisin and touches of dark chocolate compliment the delicate sherry flavours. Sweet brown sugar remains, whilst hints of walnut add a slightly drying aspect.
Finish: A refined and humble dram with a black peppercorn and lingering mature oak finish.
Bowmore Black 3-Year-Old 1964 - Final Edition
The final batch of a three-part release of Oloroso cask 1964, bottled back in 1990. These three releases have earned themselves huge respect from whisky enthusiasts. Tasting notes for this whisky are very limited and come complete with their original presentation boxes.
'With an almost unfathomable concentration and intensity of flavour, and with the perfect balance of fruit, peat and power.'