The Macallan 'The Reach' Single Malt is over 80 years old | Source: The Macallan

Better With Age: The Oldest Whiskeys You Can Buy Today

When you think of the few things that get better with age, wine, cheese and whiskey are usually the first trios to spring to mind. And for whiskey, in particular, age is far more than just a number – it’s one of the most important factors for defining quality.

A well preserved and long matured whiskey has a significantly different taste profile compared to a younger drop. So as we find whiskey getting progressively better as it matures, here’s a look at some of the oldest whiskeys you can buy today.

Glenlivet 1940

Famous independent Scottish bottlers, Gordon & MacPhail released 250 crystal decanters filled with this Glenlivet single malt distilled in 1940 in Speyside, Scotland. Encased in a decanter created by internationally acclaimed architect and designer, Sir David Adjaye, each is priced at A$160,000. The first released, bottle number one, sold at auction for A$262,000 at Sotheby’s Hong Kong in October 2021 becoming the most expensive independently bottled single malt Scotch whisky ever sold at auction.

Glenlivet 80 Year Old whiskey

The Macallan The Reach Single Malt

As the famous whiskey distiller’s oldest single malt, ‘The Reach’ was distilled in 1940 making it over eight decades old. Crafted from a single sherry-seasoned oak cask, the expression is limited to just 288 decanters each with a price tag of almost A$180,000.

The Macallan the reach whiskey case
Source: The Macallan

Glenavon Special Liqueur Whisky

Bottled between 1851 and 1858 at the Glenavon Distillery in northeast Scotland, this Speyside Scotch is believed to be around 160 years old. In 2006, a pale green half-sized bottle holding around 400ml was sold at Bonham’s auction house in London for A$26,287.

Glenavon Special Liqueur Whisky
Source: Bonhams

Mortlach 1939

Distilled back in 1939, when this whiskey from Speyside, Scotland was released in 2015 it was the oldest single malt ever bottled. Another release under Gordon and MacPhail’s Generations brand, it was aged in a Spanish Oak former sherry cask and bottled in a tear shaped hand-blown crystal decanter. It commands an average value of around A$35,750.

Mortlach 1939 whiskey
Source: Robb Report

Glenfarclas 60 Year Old

Released in 2014, this single malt scotch whiskey from Glenfarclas distillery in Scotland is aged for 60 years in a first-fill sherry butt producing just 360 bottles. Housed in bespoke cut crystal decanters and a hexagonal presentation box, these Speyside whiskeys cost A$25,000 each.

Glenfarclas 60 YO
Source: Glenfarclas

The Dalmore 64 Trinitas

Released in 2010, just three bottles of this Scottish single malt were produced each with a price tag of around A$177,000. Bottled in 1946, the 64-year-old drop is more of a timeless collectable than a drinking whiskey with one of the bottles breaking price records of the time when it sold.

The Dalmore 64 Trinitas whiskey
Source: Glencairn

Yamazaki 50 Year Old

Just 50 bottles of the ultra-rare Japanese whisky were released in 2005 by the famed Yamazaki distillery. There are believed to only be around 12 bottles left with one selling last week at a Bonhams Hong Kong auction for over A$850,000.

Yamazaki 50 Year Old
Source: Bonhams

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