S howcasing the most comprehensive range of Scotch whisky to come to the market from a private ‘cellar’, this magnificent collection is estimated to bring in the region of £4 million. The sale will open for online bidding on 27 September 2019 and culminate in a live auction on 24 October at the Olympia event space in West Kensington, London, alongside RM Sotheby’s sale of collectible motor cars on the same day, an annual highlight on the European collector car calendar since 2007. This year’s sale will present another exceptional group of more than 60 blue-chip cars spanning all segments of the market, from European sports cars to racing icons, supercars, and modern classics
The Ultimate Whisky Collector has always been fascinated by every expression of Scotch whisky and though he acquired and enjoyed a wide range, he naturally established several favourites along the way. Whiskies from Bowmore, Dalmore, Highland Park and especially The Macallan captured his heart and top bottles from these distilleries became his focus. During his pursuit, the collector met and developed a relationship with U.S. based whisky specialist Jonathan Read who has played an important role in developing this collection. Together, they sought to identify and complete important verticals as well as delve into the vast world of Scotch whiskies bottled decades ago.
The collection is defined by its strong representation of The Macallan bottlings, which comprise half of the lots in the sale and have a combined estimated value of more than £2.2 million. The outstanding line-up is headed by the originally-labelled 60 years old The Macallan 1926 from cask #263. Cask 263 yielded only 40 bottles and is considered the ‘holy grail’ of whiskies. Also notable is the 178-bottle-strong collection of Fine and Rare spanning seven decades, from 1926 through to 1991, the most comprehensive collection of the Macallan Fine and Rare series ever offered at auction.
Sotheby’s has also commissioned two bespoke, hand-made cabinets on behalf of the collector, designed by British craftsman James Laycock, to perfectly fit each of the two complete Macallan in Lalique Six Pillars Collections in the sale. These stunning decanters will be housed within a lockable compartment of two floor-standing walnut cabinets with a fitted mirror interior and their etched glass bases with polished edges are illuminated by LED systems upon which the bottles sit. One is French polished, while the other is black lacquered; both would make truly special additions to any whisky aficionado’s collection.
A rare collection of Macallan Fine and Rare Miniature bottles will be offered in an exclusively commissioned lockable wall-mounted cabinet, also designed by James Laycock. French polished Burr oak doors open to reveal a fitted mahogany and walnut interior with 46 identical compartments within which these bottles, ranging from 1937 to 1991, are displayed. These 46 bottles represent the complete collection of miniatures in the Fine and Rare series as the series existed when the Ultimate Whisky Collector stopped collecting them in 2018.
In addition to an unrivalled offering of iconic bottlings, the Ultimate Whisky Collection will also present some of the finest casks available for sale, each selected and tasted by Jonny Fowle, Sotheby’s Spirits Specialist. Amongst these are such peated rarities as Bowmore and Laphroaig casks from 1995, and Bruichladdich’s Octomore, distilled in 2012. Further highlights include barrels and Hogsheads from legendary distilleries such as Dalmore, Bunnahabhain and Clynelish, the Highland Park First Fill Oloroso Sherry Cask and Springbank First Fill Oloroso Sherry Cask.