Highland Park’s 50-year-old whiskey captures time in a bottle

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One of the rarer bottlings of this limited edition scotch can be yours via Bonhams in January.

Half a century is a milestone worth celebrating on any occasion; in a world of ephemeral, it is a guarantee of quality. Things that last. Things created to last. In love, 50 years is the golden anniversary; in scotch, the continuation of a legacy, as in Highland Park, whose new 50 Year Old single malt celebrates the 223 years of excellence of the Orkney distillery.

Styled with sherry-rich dried fruit and sweet caramel, Highland Park 50 Year Old Single Malt Scotch comes in a limited edition of 274 bottles, each signed by whiskey master Gordon Motion. And for serious scotch lovers, the first of these bottles will arrive at Bonhams auction on January 21, 2022, with an estimated value of HK $ 210,000-250,000.

“This 50 year old whiskey is one of our oldest and rarest versions and I am very proud to have been a part of its journey,” said Motion. “When I tasted it, it absorbed the rich flavors of dried fruit sherry and sweet caramel from its final maturation in the first fill cask, while retaining all of the delicate fragrance and flavors of the original refill casks. . “

Highland Park’s third 50-year-old single malt

Just the third bottling in 50 years in the history of Highland Park, every step of its creation has been painstakingly considered and measured to present the most delicate and rich flavors that a great whiskey can offer. Created using a traditional solera system – a way to ripen sherry – scotch offers the richness and maturity of old and new flavors.

For those unfamiliar with the solera system, the process borrows a small amount of whiskey produced from a previous batch, blending it with the new expression to capture the flavors of a flavor – heirlooms in a heirloom. The new 50 Years Edition of Highland Park combines a careful selection of nine refill barrels from 1968, reconditioned in fine first fill oak and sherry barrels. After 12 years of maturation, a limited cask was chosen and blended with a tiny portion of the previous 50-year-old version by the distillery.

“I introduced a small amount of this cask into some of our 50 year old 2018 lots, to create an extra layer of depth and complexity,” adds Motion. “As the 2018 50 Years contains part of our 2010 batch, this approach allows me to maintain the core DNA of our oldest Highland whiskey through each extremely limited batch release. “

The whiskey auction market remains robust

Daniel lam

Despite the impact of the pandemic, the whiskey auction market has remained strong and has even generated an audience among young collectors, according to Daniel Lam, fine wine and whiskey specialist at Bonhams.

“[Whisky] has become a common category in almost all international auction houses, ”says Lam. “For scotch, Japanese whiskey and American bourbon, the market has nurtured a group of very young collectors, which is a positive sign for the future of whiskey auctions.

For Lam, the Highland Park 50 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whiskey is an attractive auction piece for its heritage and presentation, as well as its exclusivity of just 274 bottles.

“Each whiskey distillery has its own unique premium bottling, and Highland Park, located as Scotland’s northernmost distillery, has a very distinctive style,” says Lam. “Personally, I love the packaging, the craftsmanship and the handcrafted golden carafe. “

Make green the new black

The upcoming charity auction is supporting Green Power, a renowned green group NGO that tackles various environmental issues of local communities, such as climate change, waste reduction and biodiversity. All net proceeds from the auction will be donated to the organization to support their environmental education and sustainability projects.

“Bonhams plays a role in society, we value corporate social responsibility. Therefore, we would like to support Green Power for their good causes in addressing and mitigating environmental issues, especially here in Hong Kong, ”Lam said, stressing the importance of sustainability for the future of whiskey.

“There is a saying, ‘green is the new black’; we need to address the importance of sustainability for whiskey distillers for the long term development of the whiskey industry, ”adds Lam. “A partnership with Green Power could educate whiskey distillers about being ‘green’.

A collector’s item

The whiskey is not only a time capsule of historical flavors, it presents itself as an object of art in its own right: the thick glass bottle is embossed with a design inspired by the Nordic heritage of Orkney Island. , dating back over 1,200 years, packaged in a wooden box handcrafted by Scottish master craftsman John Galvin.

One of its 274 exclusive bottles is set to go up for auction on January 21, 2022, with an estimated value of between HK $ 210,000 and HK $ 250,000.

For more information visit highlandparkwhisky.com.

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