What Makes A Rare And Collectable Whisky?

A heady taste of Diageo’s best and boldest.

By Terry Christodoulou 24/03/2020

Collectable whisky has become a bona fide luxury commodity.

As such, collectors are increasingly searching out not only fabled grails, but those newcomers set to be both rich in flavour and future value.

Enter Diageo, which, with a number of storied distilleries under its banner, has recently made available in Australia its 2019 Special Releases Scotch Whisky Collection.

The Special Releases series was born in 2001 out of growing market interest in unique and collectable whiskies – though this marks the first year given a theme. Entitled ‘Rare by Nature’, the new collection of eight, cask strength, single malt Scotch whiskies from Scotland’s most renowned distillers has been personally selected by master blender, Dr Craig Wilson.

The line-up boasts limited releases from Cardhu, Cragganmore, Dalwhinnie, Lagavulin, Mortlach, Pittyvaich, Singleton and Talisker, running geographic lines across the dynamic whisky terrains of Speyside and the Highlands to Islay and the Islands.

Pittyvaich Whisky

“Each liquid transports you to its heartland, connecting you to that particular part of Scotland and the surroundings that make each distillery and liquid so unique,” says a rightly excited Dr Wilson.

The most rare is the Pittyvaich 29-year-old ($520). Hailing from a Speyside distillery that closed in 1993, its limited run and age make for an appealing addition to any decent collection.

Mortlach Whisky

The cream of the crop, however, is the Mortlach 26-year-old ($2500), affectionately known as ‘The Beast of Dufftown’. Limited to 3,000 bottles, the rich hued liquid is the product of time spent in a Pedro Ximenez seasoned cask – delivered on an initially mellow nose before rich, fruity notes fill the palate.

The 2019 Special Releases collection is now available in limited numbers from whisky specialists.




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