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The World's Most Valuable Whisky at Sotheby's in London

Source: Future Publishing / Getty

A Prohibition-era bottle of scotch whisky aged for 60 years before it was bottled sold for $2.7 million at an auction Saturday.

The Macallan Adami 1926 is a rare single malt whisky, with there only being 40 bottles made. Twelve of those bottles, including the one sold Saturday, featured a design from an Italian painter named Valerio Adami. One of these twelve bottles was thought to have been destroyed during the 2011 Japanese earthquake, making the product even rarer.

The Macallan Adami was sold for $2.7 million at Sotheby’s in London, breaking the record for the most expensive bottle of whisky. The three previous auction records for any bottle of wine or spirit were broken by bottles from the same cask between 2018 and 2019.

The previous record was set in 2019, after a Macallan 1926 sold for $1.9 million.

“The Macallan 1926 is the one whisky that every auctioneer wants to sell and every collector wants to own,” Jonny Fowle, Sotheby’s global head of spirits, told the Associate Press.

Per Sotheby’s, the record breaking whisky aged in “super rich European oak, ex-Sherry barrels” and bottle in 1986. When the auction house received the bottle, they worked with Macallan to replace the cork and capsule.

The tase of the whisky has been described as containing “rich dark fruits, black cherry compote alongside sticky dates, followed by intense sweet antique oak,” according to the Macallan’s Master Whisky Maker Kirsteen Campbell, who was present when the bottle was opened during the cork and capsule replacement.

“It was a very special moment to experience the opening of this iconic 60 years old single malt, first bottled 37 years ago, and I hope the new custodian will enjoy the same privilege.”