Earlier this month, The Macallan introduced The Macallan Rare Cask, a new single malt whisky that joins the brand’s core range of expressions. Rare Cask is aged exclusively in Spanish oak casks that held dry olorosso sherry for 18 months before being emptied, shipped to Scotland and filled with whisky for an undisclosed amount of time. There’s no age statement here. Instead, the distillery and whisky maker, Bob Dalgarno, aimed to achieve a specific taste profile, not a specific age.
The interaction of spirit and sherry-seasoned wood created a richly-flavored whisky with a ruby-red hue. On the nose, it’s bursting with deep aromas of chocolate and vanilla, raisin and fruit. Spices like ginger and nutmeg show themselves too, creating a complex but well-balanced start to this whisky. Take a sip, and you’ll find more of those chocolate and raisin notes, plus some orange zest, walnuts, baking spices and oak. It’s full-bodied, and toward the finish things turn warm and dry as the oak becomes more prominent.
This is good whisky. By taking age out of the equation and choosing to instead focus on wood and process, The Macallan has created a bold expression that brings something new to the table. Throw in the heavy glass decanter (and the price tag), and you’ve got a special occasion dram for yourself or a solid gift for your whisky-drinking friends.
– 43% ABV
CE Rating: ★★★★