A bottle of single malt whisky from The Macallan distillery is set to go for auction next month, with an estimated price of up to £1.2million.

Experts say The Macallan 1926 is known to be the most sought-after Scotch whisky, with a similar bottle selling for a record-breaking £1.5m in 2019.

It is the first time since then that a bottle from the same cask has been brought to auction.

After being aged in sherry casks for six decades, just 40 bottles of The Macallan 1926 were bottled in 1986, representing the oldest Macallan vintage ever produced. 

Many of the bottles were reportedly not made available for purchase and instead, some were offered to The Macallan’s top clients.

The Macallan Adami 1926 will go under the hammer at Sotheby’s in London on 18 November, with an estimate of £750,000 to £1.2m.

‘The Macallan 1926 is the one whisky that every auctioneer wants to sell and every collector wants to own,’ said Jonny Fowle, Sotheby’s global head of spirits.

‘I am extremely excited to bring a bottle to a Sotheby’s auction for the first time since we set the record for this vintage four years ago. 

‘Working alongside our friends at The Macallan Distillery to recondition and perform clinical analysis on this bottle and liquid has elevated it to an unparalleled status. 

‘Now, as the bedrock for all Macallan 1926 authenticity and with its condition approved by master distiller Kirsten Campbell, this must surely be the most desirable bottle of whisky ever to come to the market.’

The Macallan. Credit: Tristan Fewings/Getty

Of the 40 bottles drawn in 1986, 14 were decorated with the iconic Fine and Rare labels, one of which was the record-breaking bottle sold by Sotheby’s in 2019.

 Two bottles were released with no labels at all. 

Of these two, one was hand painted by Irish artist Michael Dillon, a creation that saw Macallan’s own Easter Elchies House immortalised onto the bottle. 

When sold in 2018, it became the first bottle of whisky to surpass £1 million.

Of the remaining bottles, in 1986 twelve were labelled by Pop Artist Sir Peter Blake, whose work saw the most notable events from this year in the roaring 20s depicted in black and white sketches and photography. 

In 1993, a further 12 bottles had their labels designed by Italian painter Valerio Adami.

One of the Adami-labelled bottles is thought to have been destroyed during a Japanese earthquake in 1911, while the remaining unlabelled bottle is unaccounted for. 

It is also believed that at least one of the 40 bottles has been opened and consumed, verified by images taken in Japan.

Read more news and reviews on Scottish Field’s food and drink pages.

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