Founded in 1824 when a license was granted to Alexander Reid in order to produce whisky under the name of Elchies Distillery..
It isn’t until 1892 when Roderick Kemp buys the distillery and re names it Macallan – Glenlivet that we start to recognise the Macallan name..
The name Macallan ’ is most likely derived from two Gaelic words -‘Magh’ meaning a fertile piece of ground and ‘Ellan’, meaning ‘of St Fillan’, an Irish born monk who travelled widely in Scotland spreading Christianity during the eighth century.
The original distillery is now mothballed and sits in the shadow of a new state of the art building just waiting silently hoping to be released from its slumber..
The new distillery boasts a capacity of 15 million litres coming from its 17 ton full Lauter mash tun, 21 stainless steel washbacks that can each hold 68,000 litres and 36 stills ( yes 36 ) there are 12 wash stills and 24 spirit stills..
Macallan 2017 Classic Cut
Distillery.. Macallan ( Old Site)
Casks.. American and European Sherry barrels..
Outturn.. 90,000 bottles ( Limited Edition )
Nose.. Subtle notes of dates and raisins are soon overpowered by vanilla and honey notes along with a toffee backbone.. Chocolate, ginger and soft citrus notes are also evident.
Palate.. The sweetness is still very evident but it does carry those dried fruits along.. Dates, plum, chocolate, candied orange and soft spices cover a slight oaky note..
Finish.. Spicy with a twist of oak.
Thoughts.. Where do I start with this one ? Ok I’m not going to go into a tantrum over the concept as I’ve done that before.
The liquid is certainly decent, it challenges the concept of Sherry matured whisky as the emphasis seems more on the sweet side of things and that’s ok, the typical Sherry notes do show up and it’s a good balance between typical and unexpected..
Now I assume these casks are probably re fill casks or this is younger than might be expected as like mentioned the Sherry has not dominated the aroma or flavours.. The age isn’t important until you add a price tag and even then some will argue that the price shouldn’t reflect the whisky for which I agree with to an extent..
The original price at Release was I believe around $90 which in today’s market for a NAS Macallan seems pretty reasonable don’t you think ? Although today’s secondary market seems to be nearer the £300 !!
Would I buy a bottle ? I don’t know is the honest answer, certainly not at £300 a bottle but if under the £90 then it’s a consideration but, and yes there is always a but.. Let’s assume this is under 10 years old and carries a limited edition of 90,000 bottles then where is the value ? The whisky like I said is pretty decent, it does come in at cask strength and that’s two positive points but change the name on the label and it probably drops by £20 -30 pounds..
With thanks to Stuart for the sample..