About this blog:

This blog will feature tasting notes, reviews, distillery visits and whisky news with focus mainly on Scottish single malts. This will sometimes be accompanied by politically incorrect (whisky) opinions. You have now been warned! :-)
The views expressed here are entirely my own, unless otherwise stated.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013


Tonight, I just read that the next Macallan Easter Elchies House bottling was released today. A single cask 17 years of age and at cask strength of 55,3% abv. A 170 bottles was released from cask#26 of where a total 340 bottles were drawn. The remaining bottles go on sale in December... Price £185 and sold only at the distillery visitors centre. Besides the price, the even more crazy part is that people had been lining up since 5am Sunday morning to get their hands on this.

The Macallan Easter Elchies bottling Nov 2013 - thanks to Shaun King for letting me use the picuture

Is this what whisky has become? a thing to line up for at crazy hours in the morning to make some money? if it is, its just sad, sad, sad... I know these Easter Elchies bottlings are quite sought after, but this is getting down right ridiculous. Have some people become so far stretched economically that they are willing to line up and freeze for several hours for a chance to double their money? There were even stories of people driving up to Speyside from Edinburgh to get a bottle!!

I'm betting close to NONE of these bottles will ever be opened. Whisky investing and hoarding like this is, IMO, an insult to the guys that make the whisky and its becoming a significant dark side of the whisky market these days.

I wonder when the whisky bubble will burst? Is it when the 'Tiger'-economies in the Far East, especially China slows down? or Russia slows? Brazil maybe? But if we take a look at the investments being made by the whisky industry now and their plans for coming years, it doesn't seem that they're worried about a slow down.

Now, I'm certainly no market strategist, but when making investments of billions of UK £, banks and shareholders will certainly be wanting them back along with a big fat return. It's a business and this is how we've chosen to live (most of us, anyway)... but there is a long way from lining up at 5am in the morning to get a single bottle to provide the worlds population with drinks (as it's not only whisky many of these companies are selling). Someone has placed alot of trust in demographic and marketing experts to make sure their capacity will still make up for demand. And even if the bubble should burst and you are down to maintaining or even losing existing customers and not getting new ones, there's only us customers to pay for those investments and current demand, resulting in higher prices for us.

I'll not bore you much longer with this, but I am, as I've mentioned in other posts before, aware that distilleries are businesses and not philanthropy or pet project of a crazed billionaire - it's about cool cash... I just hope cool cash doesn't blur the picture too much for either the people in the line to get an Easter Elchies bottling or the people in the corporate board rooms.

Anyway, I know you're here for the whisky so let me review another Macallan for you - not the Easter Elchies one (though I would like to that that ;-) )

Easter Elchies House at Macallan - June 13th 2013 © The Malt Desk
Macallan 1997 14yo 51,6%, Sherry hogshead#1046, 216 bottles, Adelphi

Colour is mahogany

Chocolate, nutmeg, hint of oriental spices and orange peel, prunes and burnt sugar

Creamy/Oily on arrival, a streak of sulphur (matches), amaretto, strong coffee, orange infused chocolates and polished leather. Sadly it gets a tad too bitter and drying for me on the finish

I was looking forward to this one as I counted on a good pick from Adelphi and with that a trip down memory lane to the likes of the Cask Strength Macallan from a few years back. Sadly it never got much further than out the driveway and certainly not down memory lane. Guess my expectations was too high :-/


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