Here are the highlights from our April Miniatures, Memorabilia & Books Auction from tiny bottles with large prices to weird and wonderful memorabilia to fascinating books and documents.
As well as single malts distilled in the early 20th Century, the long-aged miniature whiskies in this month’s auction contained very rare liquid indeed. Our top lot of the auction was this Karuizawa 1964 48 Year Old Sherry Cask 3603, bottled in 2012 by Wealth Solutions at a cask strength of 57.7%. This exceptional 5cl bottle achieved a hammer price of £2,700.
A number of historic Scotch malts featured in the auction including this Macallan 1958 43 Year Old from the Fine & Rare series that sold for £1,650, a Loch Lomond 54 Year Old which fetched £250, and this Glenfarclas 1953 58 Year Old Single Cask, which sold for £260.
The two oldest whiskies to go under the hammer though, were Mortlach 75 Year Old, distilled in 1939 which sold for £1,050, and only a few years its junior, the Glenlivet 1940 70 Year Old which sold for £270. Both of these were tiny 1cl press samples, a rare drop of vintage spirit.
There were almost 1500 lots of Scotch single malt and blended whiskies to bid on. One of the single malts that gathered a lot of late bidding was a press sample, this Laphroaig 30 Year Old Ian Hunter Story Book 2: Building An Icon, which sold for £700. More late bidding activity went on Ardbeg 10cl trade samples. An Ardbeg 19 Year Old Traigh Bhan – Batch 2 and Ardbeg Grooves Committee Release both fetched £100, an Ardbeg Ardcore fetched £85 and other trade samples sold for between £22 and £80.
Collectors’ favourite Springbank received a lot of interest with sought after 1990s bottlings whetting the appetite of Campbeltown fans. This Springbank 12 Year Old 100 Proof sold for £300, while a Springbank 30 Year Old fetched £200 and pairs of 1990s Springbank 21 Year Old and Springbank 25 Year Old sold for between £70 and £75 each.
At Whisky.Auction we love old blends and there were plenty stunningly well-preserved blends going back as far as the 1930s for us to get excited about in the April sale, from blenders such as Buchanan’s and White Horse.
One Buchanan’s Black & White 8 Year Old Spring Cap, bottled in the 1930s to 1940s and imported to the USA by The Fleischmann Distilling Corporation sold for £170. Another US import from the 1930s was this Buchanan’s Black & White Oval 12 Year Old Spring Cap, with a tax stamp dated 1936, which sold for £120. A bottle of 1940s Teacher’s Highland Cream with a US Navy Mess sticker sold for £140 and a White Horse 8 Year Old bottled in the 1930s sold for £120.
Game of Thrones Limited Edition Chests, designed to hold the original eight bottles in the series sold for between £1000 and £1050 each. A Glenmorangie Presentation Putter, made by Swilken of St Andrews sold for £340 and a framed, signed photograph of one famous Scot holding another (Sir Alex Ferguson and a bottle of Dalmore) fetched a hammer price of £120. Johnnie Walker Sporting Prints sold for between £8 and £30 each.
Gorgeous glassware and crystal from Lalique, Waterford and Riedel. The top two lots were taken by two Yamazaki 55 Year Old Tasting Glasses Sets, selling for £370 and £350 and a beautiful Macallan Glass by Le Clos featuring a thistle design sold for £260.
The Licensed Victuallers Year Book for 1910 sold for £55. A copy of the rarely seen Scottish Whisky Distilleries by Misako Udo (sold for £80) and Andrew Jefford’s Whisky Island, a must read for any Islay whisky fans, in my opinion was an absolute steal at £6 for the winning bidder.
Teddy Bears, Violins and Sailing Ships
Chartreuse again showed strong results with an increase in prices from recent months. Miniature bottles of Green and Yellow Chartreuse ranged from the 1940s to 1990s. The top price of £45 went to this Chartreuse Yellow bottled between 1941 and 1951.
Finally, if novelty miniatures are your thing then there were more than a few interestingly presented spirits. Make sure you have a look at the teddy bears such as this Suntory Brandy or Suntory Reserve, violins, sailing ships, the Empire State Building, and my personal favourite, a chauffeur driven L. Dorville Napoleon Brandy.