October saw strong bidding across all auction categories. Japanese whisky and Macallan single malt whisky were again the bidders’ favourites but there was also increased interest in other classics, Islay whisky, fine and rare rum and American whiskey.
Full results can be found in our Past Auctions but here are some of our personal highlights:
A mid 1980s distillation, single sherry cask matured Karuizawa is always going to attract keen bidding at auction, but this one with an original output of only 105 bottles saw its hammer price hit £16200, the best result yet. The appetite for well aged malts from this long closed Japanese distillery does not diminish with time. Rising prices and increasing scarcity are a good sign for anyone who has managed to get hold of Karuizawa over the years. Winning Bid £16200
When a complete set of whiskies appears at auction the individual bottles become more attractive to the keenest buyers and it follows that higher prices are achieved for all the bottles within that set. Sapphire Geisha Karuizawas are a great example of this. This 31 Year Old is the twin to the 36 Year Old mentioned above. The cask #3558 that this edition came from produced just 146 bottles and it too achieved another record price. Our prediction is that this trend will continue. In a few months time we’ll hear you reminiscing about the good old days: ‘remember when you could pick up a pair of Karuizawa Sapphire Geishas for under £30K?’. Winning Bid £13400
Only five vintages were bottled in this series, which has become known as The Macallan Handwritten Label. This Macallan 1940 vintage, the second of the group, was bottled for the Italian market, as so many great Macallan’s often were. The Macallan Handwritten editions are particularly prized by Macallan enthusiasts and collectors, and represent the great whiskies that built Macallan’s ongoing reputation and that are so different to what Macallan produces today. Winning Bid £9800
One of these appeared back in June in the The Worshipful Company of Distillers’ Charity Auction and it was great to see one appear here again. This Havana Club rum was produced for the 500th anniversary of the city of Havana, and was one of only 500 individually numbered, mouth blown decanters inspired by the architecture of Havana. It was originally released with a recommended retail price of £3000. Winning Bid £5000
Few bottles show the systemic price rises of Japanese whisky better than this single cask of Hanyu 2000, bottled in 2016 for The Whisky Exchange. These hugely popular Hanyu #362 have sold at Whisky.Auction 17 times to date. The first recorded sale was in March 2017 when a bottle sold for £575, Just three years later, in October 2020, the most recent bottle fetched £1750, setting a new record for Hanyu #362 at auction. Winning Bid £1750