Macallan Whiskey Cask could break auction records after owner forgot it at distillery 30 years ago


A rare whiskey cask that was left in a Scottish distillery’s warehouse for more than 30 years after its owner forgot to bring it home could set a record this week for the most expensive whiskey cask ever auctioned by price per bottle.


A buyer paid the famed Macallan distillery in Moray, Scotland, around $6,500 to fill the 374-litre cask with single malt Scotch in May 1988, according to Whiskey Hammer, the online portal running the auction.

However, the whisky’s owner, described only as an expat in Scotland, forgot to collect it and accidentally left it to mature for 34 years in Macallan’s warehouse before the distillery called to remind him, according to the Press Association.

The whiskey went on sale Friday and has already reached a high bid of around $619,878, surpassing the $572,000 paid for a cask of 1989 Macallan hogshead sherry in 2020, which is the highest whiskey cask per bottle. expensive never sold at auction.

However, the 1989 cask could only produce 261 bottles, which pushed its price per bottle to a record high of around $2,200, while the 1988 Macallan cask currently up for auction produces around 534 bottles and is expected to sell for more than around $1,174,800 by auction time ending Sunday to top that record.

The 1988 Macallan is described as having notes of salted caramel and orange marmalade on the nose and a mouthfeel of rich spice with a honeycomb and sweet orchard fruit finish, according to the tasting notes.


The barrel won’t be able to stay at the Macallan this time. The auction listing notes that as a condition of sale, the distillery requires the buyer to move the whiskey from its warehouse by June 10.

Large number

$1,873,951. This is the price of the most expensive bottle of whiskey ever sold at auction, Macallan 1926, in 2019.

Key Context

Founded in 1824, The Macallan is one of Scotland’s oldest distilleries, and its bottles are among the most coveted by collectors. In February, Macallan released a rare 81-year-old single malt whisky, his oldest to date. Each decanter (of which only 288 have been listed worldwide) has a suggested retail price of $125,000.

Further reading

‘Forgotten’ whiskey cask set to set world record price (Press Association)

The Macallan just released their oldest whiskey yet – Here’s what to know about the 81-year-old single malt (Forbes)

A Macallan Cask NFT sold for $2.3 million. What does this mean for whiskey collectors? (Forbes)

The Macallan bottle sells for $1.9 million and breaks the world whiskey record…again (Forbes)