July saw strong pricing across the board, with closed Japanese distillery Karuizawa coming out on top as it so often does. An exceptionally rare decanter from Royal Salute, two first ‘point one’ bottlings from The Scotch Malt Whisky Society and collectable Macallan made up some of the best of the rest.
Summer months can be quieter for retail, but this certainly wasn’t the case for auctioning in July, with plenty of bidding going right down to the wire. Scotch and Japanese whisky dominated the top lots, but there was also increased demand elsewhere, particularly in Cognac and Fine Wine, with bidders taking advantage of the diversity of lots.
You can view the full results in our Past Auctions, meanwhile here are our own personal highlights:
One of a pair of the earlier Geisha releases which have gone on to prove so popular and collectable. This one was aged for 33 years in a sherry cask, giving it a classic Karuizawa leathery profile. Whisky from Karuizawa distillery, closed in 2000, has gone from strength to strength and so often tops the auctions results as prices continue to break boundaries.
Winning Bid £9200
Another whisky from Japan’s finest, this one was bottled for the Noh series. Matured in single sherry cask #7576, it was bottled in 2012 for La Maison Du Whisky in Paris. It’s another sherry monster, this one was rated 93 points by Serge Valentin and ended up finishing north of £5000, significantly more than we’ve seen this sell for recently.
Winning Bid £5200
One of only 500 of these decanters that were ever created, this Royal Salute 40 Year Old was bottled in 1993 for the US market to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. This blend includes malts from Glenlivet, Strathisla, Glen Grant and Longmorn. The crystal ruby decanter was designed by Baccarat. This one is so seldom seen at auction and it finished at an impressive hammer for any blended whisky.
Winning Bid £4300
Two firsts, or ‘point ones’ from the Scotch Malt Whisky Society, one distilled at Glenrothes, the other distilled at Edradour. The SMWS first releases have become cult-like for enthusiasts and collectors, but how many of you predicted they would have sold for as much as they did? Both bottles were subjected to fearsome bidding in the closing stages and the hammer prices went well above expectation.
Winning Bid £4300 & £3900
Bottled in 2016 from six bourbon hogsheads, this is an old Bowmore in every way, distilled a long time ago and aged in cask for a long 43 years. This one has tropical fruits that are more subtle than whiskies distilled at Bowmore in the 1960s. It’s always one of the favourites and prices have been slowly creeping up at auction since its release.
Winning Bid £3600
The Macallan Private Eye appears regularly at our auctions. It was released in 1996 to celebrate the 35th anniversary of satirical magazine Private Eye. It’s vatting of casks selected by whisky maker FA Newlands, and includes a cask from 1961, which is the year Private Eye was founded. Prices had dipped toward the end of 2019, now in 2020 we’ve seen its resurgence.
Winning Bid £3500