Islay's Oldest Single Malt Scotch Whisky To Be Auctioned This Fall

Want to add some 54-year-old single malt to your liquor cabinet? Better be willing to pay a hefty price. Bowmore has decided to auction two of its 12 bottles of Bowmore 1957 Year Single Malt Scotch Whisky — the oldest single malt ever released from Scotland's famous whisky-producing island of Islay. 

What makes this Bowmore so rare? The finished product spent 43 years in a second-fill sherry cask, then the next 11 in a second-fill bourbon cask, reports The Spirits Business. Plus, each bottle was hand-crafted by glass artists Brodie Nairn and Nichola Burns, and is supposed to remind drinkers of the "waves of the sea" that crash against the No.1 vault's sea-facing wall. Bowmore has described the aroma of the 1957 single malt as having hints of blueberries, figs, and almonds; and the taste as suggesting blueberries, cassis, figs, sea salt, and eucalyptus.

All this comes at quite a price: At the two upcoming auctions at Bonhams auction houses in Edinburgh and New York City, the starting price is £100,000 (or $160,000). For the remaining eight bottles (two will be held on reserve), to be released sometime in the future, the prices will be about the same. Still, the chief blender thinks it's worth the price tag, calling the single malt "nothing short of brilliance in a glass."