The Best Rare And Very Old Whiskeys That Are Worth The (Huge) Investment

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Feb 26 | By entertainoiam2admin | Views: 28 | Comments: 0
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We love telling you about whiskeys that are, first-and-foremost, affordable. Building a whiskey palate takes a lot of time. So being able to actually pay for it is important. The good news is that this isn’t terribly tough — whiskey can be very affordable and very drinkable at the same time. It often is.

Still, to have an experienced palate, you sometimes need to go the other direction. The higher ends of the price spectrum. That’s where we’re headed today. We’re going to the top of the whiskey mountain and breaking down some of our favorite rare and very old bottles of whisk(e)y. Warning: they’re pricey. While we try to keep most of our lists in the $10 to $250 price range, this list is starting at the $1,000 price point.

We hear your scoffs. But there’s a real reason to embark on a whiskey journey in this price range. These whiskeys represent the oldest and most sought after expressions from whiskey makers who know what they’re doing and wouldn’t dare put out a product that’s not spectacular. These are not every day sipping whiskeys and we’re not pretending that’s what you should buy them for. No, these are collector’s items that warrant a nip every now and then when you have something to really celebrate.

The ten bottles below represent some of the coolest and rarest bottles of whisk(e)y you can buy today. Granted, it may be a better decision to spend the couple grand you have laying around on a dope vacation. But you only live once and if one of these feels like your jam, who are we to stop you?

The Singleton Of Glendullan Special Reserve 38-Year-Old

Style: Single Malt Whisky
ABV: 59.8%
Average Price: $1,000

The Whisky:

This was the first special release of the Glendullan single malt from The Singleton under Diageo back in 2014. The whisky was aged for 38 long years in re-filled European oak, giving it a serious depth. There were only 3,756 bottles released and every year that number gets smaller. For what it’s worth, it’s also one of my favorite drams from last year.

Tasting Notes:

This is a complex dram. Expect notes of demerara sugar, toffee, vanilla, and oak mingling with blooming spring flowers and a hint of pencil shavings. That woody nature marries with the oak as a floral bloom carries on with a small note of melon and white pepper. The oakiness carries on to the end with a clear sense of grass and florals as the sip fades.

WhistlePig 111 Proof 11 Year Old Straight Rye

Style: Straight Rye Whiskey
ABV: 55.5%
Average Price: $1,200

The Whiskey:

This 100 percent rye is a bold whiskey. The juice is aged for eleven years — one year longer than their standard straight rye — in both new American oak and ex-bourbon barrels. It’s then bottled at a high proof of 111 to keep the whiskey bold and very drinkable.

Tasting Notes:

Wood, rye pepperiness, and fresh ginger greet you. Vanilla, caramel, and oak form an underpinning to the taste with hints of biscuits smothered in butter and honey contrasting sharp cinnamon spiciness. The spice from the rye carries through to the end with a nice hint of butterscotch closing things out.

Eagle Rare 17 Year Old

Style: Straight Bourbon Whiskey
ABV: 50.5%
Average Price: $1,300

The Whiskey:

Buffalo Trace’s Eagle Rare is a classic bourbon. Their 17-year-old expression is a masterclass in bourbon making. Their 2019 release was distilled in 2002 from a mash bill of Kentucky corn, Minnesota rye, and North Dakota malted barley with that iconic Kentucky limestone water. Then it settles in new American oak for exactly 17 years and three months.

Tasting Notes:

Maple syrup, musty oak, and tart choke cherries arrive first. That oak carries through as rich caramel and vanilla beans burst from the sip with an echo of bitter dark chocolate. Finally, a wisp of tobacco surfaces with a note of fresh spearmint and a lasting impression of that oak.

Van Winkle’s Family Reserve Rye 13 Year Old

Style: Straight Rye Whiskey
ABV: 47.8%
Average Price: $1,500

The Whiskey:

This is a very rare whiskey that only has tiny releases in October and spring every year. It’s also the only non-wheated expression from the Van Winkle line up. Add in the extra-long aging for a straight rye whiskey and you have one of the rarest and most sought after bottles of American whiskey on the market.

Tasting Notes:

Fresh sweet tobacco, buttery caramel, and sharp rye spices open this dram up. Then you’re hit with rich toffee, roasted almonds, worn leather, and an echo of vanilla. Dried red fruits with a plumy edge come in late with a sense of white pepper spice as the end embraces you with warmth.

Midleton Very Rare 1985

Style: Irish Whiskey
ABV: 40%
Average Price: $1,800

The Whiskey:

This is an extremely rare release of whiskey that’s disappearing fast. This expression started when Midleton’s master distiller, Barry Crockett, handpicked exactly 50 casks from their rickhouses of 12 to 25 years old whiskeys. They then made a single issue bottling and… that’s it. This bottle, in particular, is the 1985 expression from the Very Rare program, making it amazingly rare.

Tasting Notes:

These expressions ebb and flow with each release. Expect honey notes next to flourishes of bright florals, vanilla, and oak. There’ll be a spiciness, a sense of an orchard in spring, and clear wood throughout.

Talisker The Bodega Series 40 Year Old

Style: Single Malt Whisky
ABV: 50%
Average Price: $2,750

The Whisky:

Last year saw Talikser’s first entry in their new Bodega Series. The whisky celebrates the use of Spanish sherry casks in aging the single malt. The whisky was distilled in 1978 and in 2018, the juice was finished in a selection of Delgado Zuleta’s award-winning Quo Vadis amontillado sherry casks. This is a one of a kind whisky that’s only going to get better with age.

Tasting Notes:

Cedar mixes with sandalwood as white pepper, candied apples, and ripe red fruits mingle with sea-spray, black pepper, and a hint of lemon citrus. The oak carries the dram through the palate with white and black pepper making appearances with baking spices, orchard fruits, butter toffee, raspberry jam, orange zest, peaches, and a hint of lemon incense oil. That incense lingers as the sandalwood kicks back in with the orchard fruits and black pepper as the dram fades.

A.H. Hirsch Reserve 16 Years Old

Style: Straight Bourbon Whiskey
ABV: 45.8%
Average Price: $2,800

The Whiskey:

This is an incredibly rare and sought after bottle of bourbon. The whiskey was distilled in 1974 and bottled in 1990 under very unique circumstances. The 400-barrel batch of 75 percent corn, 13 percent rye, and 12 percent malted barley bourbon was distilled in what became the Michter’s Distillery and was never made again.

Tasting Notes:

This is a straight-up classic bourbon. Expect clear notes of vanilla, oak, and caramel next to a hint of spice. Rich toffee and vanilla mingle on the palate in almost too-perfect unison. Black pepper, oaky char, sweet corn caramel, and vanilla carry on as the finish fades with warmth and zero alcohol burn.

The Macallan Fine Oak 30-Year-Old

Style: Single Malt Whisky
ABV: 43%
Average Price: $3,300

The Whisky:

Oak is the point of this well-aged expression of single malt whisky. Three separate barrel programs are used, utilizing ex-American and ex-European casks for 30 long years. The result is a subtle expression that shines brightly amongst the rarest whiskies out there.

Tasting Notes:

Naturally, oak is the star of the show alongside bursts of orange, wisps of smoke, and a clear note of nutmeg and clove. That woody smoke and orange carry on through the taste with a nice dose vanilla, sandalwood, and dark cherry sweetness. A fatty nut nature brings around a velvet texture and a gently fading warmth as the oak peaks.

Ichiro’s Malt Hanyu ‘Joker Card’

Style: Japanese Single Malt Whisky
ABV: 57.7%
Average Price: $5,000

The Whisky:

If you can snag a bottle of this ultra-rare expression, you win whisky drinking this year. This was the final release from the Ichiro’s Malt Card series from the now-shuttered Hanyu Distillery. They’re never making more of this stuff. This single malt is a blend of six vintages from 1985, 1986, 1988, 1990, 1991 and 2000 from seven types of casks: Chibidaru, bourbon, Madeira, hogshead, Cognac, puncheon, and sherry butt. There’s nothing quite like this masterful bottle of whisky and there are only a few left.

Tasting Notes:

Stripped cedar bark and waxy incense mingle with just-made caramel, spiced and stewed plums, rich dates, fresh pepper, orange zest, and an old library full of worn leather with an echo of dried rose petals lurking in the background. The caramel carries through as notes of bright and dark cherries and raspberries lean towards orange marmalade, blackberries, figs, and a hint of grapefruit. Finally, the wood kicks back in and carries those berries and citrus towards a refreshingly bright finish.

Michter’s 25-Year-Old Straight Rye

Style: Straight Rye Whiskey
ABV: 58.7%
Average Price: $7,000

The Whiskey:

This whiskey is a fine example of how great aging can make a stellar dram. The rye is aged for 25 long years in charred new American white oak barrels and loses a lot to the angel’s share (evaporation), making this a very limited release and, therefore, much sought after.

Tasting Notes:

Rich vanilla, bitter espresso, and oak greet you. Orange zest burst forth with a punch of black pepper spice. Sugar crystals and dried fruit counter the black pepper as the oak and creamy toffee bring about a long-lasting and very velvety finish with a warm embrace.

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Source: https://uproxx.com/life/best-rare-bottles-of-whiskey/

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