Record-breaking bottle of Scotch sells for $2.7M

A view of a bottle of Macallan Adami 1926 whisky, on display during a media preview at Sotheby's auction house, in London, Thursday, Oct. 19, 2023. A bottle of Scotch whisky billed as “the most sought-after” in the world sold on Saturday, Nov. 18, 2023 for almost 2.2 million pounds ($2.7 million), an auction record for a bottle of wine or spirits. The Macallan Adami 1926 sold at Sotheby’s in London, after a bidding war between would-be buyers on the phone and in the room. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung, File)


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“Record-Breaking Scotch Whisky Sells for Millions at Sotheby’s Auction in London”

In a groundbreaking auction at Sotheby’s in London, a bottle of Scotch whisky has shattered records with its staggering sale price of almost 2.2 million pounds (US$2.7 million). The Macallan Adami 1926, touted as “the most sought-after” whisky in the world, was the star of the show at the auction, captivating both in-person and over-the-phone bidders in a fierce bidding war.

The Macallan 1926 is no ordinary whisky – only 40 bottles were filled in 1986 after a staggering 60 years of aging in sherry casks. What makes this particular bottle even more special is the label, designed by renowned Italian painter Valerio Adami. It’s no wonder that the spirit connoisseurs were willing to go to great lengths to get their hands on this rare and exclusive item.

However, this is not the first time that a bottle of The Macallan 1926 has made headlines at a Sotheby’s auction. In 2019, another bottle from the same cask was sold for almost 1.5 million pounds, setting a record at that time for wine or spirits. The undeniably high demand for this exceptional whisky speaks volumes about its unparalleled allure and prestige in the world of spirits.

“The Macallan 1926 is the one whisky that every auctioneer wants to sell and every collector wants to own,” remarked Jonny Fowle, Sotheby’s global head of spirits, emphasizing the immense significance of this particular bottle in the spirits market.

The bottle’s sale on Saturday was not without some controversy, as it underwent reconditioning by the distillery before being auctioned off. This process involved replacing the cork and reapplying glue to the corners of the bottle labels, prompting debate among purists about the integrity and authenticity of the product.

In a resounding finale, the final price of 2,187,500 pounds (US$2,714,250) far exceeded the pre-sale estimate, rendering it as the most expensive bottle of wine or spirits to have ever been sold at auction. The buyer’s premium, on top of the sale price of 1.75 million pounds, contributed to the overall staggering figure, indicating the unwavering commitment and determination of the successful bidder to add this exceptional bottle to their collection.

The sale of The Macallan Adami 1926 prompts us to reflect on the true value of luxury and exclusivity in the world of collectibles. It presents us with an opportunity to ponder the lengths that people are willing to go to obtain an extraordinary, once-in-a-lifetime item and the undeniable allure of a meticulously crafted, exceedingly rare spirit. This monumental sale at Sotheby’s serves as a reminder of the timeless appeal of the finer things in life and the allure of owning a piece of history.


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