The whiskey of desire

The world seems to have got a taste for whiskey: A bottle of 60-year-old whiskey is being auctioned for 1.3 million euros. But art and vintage cars are also lucrative – but not made for everyone.

Whiskey expert Charles MacLean examines the world's supposedly rarest and most valuable whiskey, the Macallan Valerio Adami.

ÜMany details determine the taste of an excellent whiskey. It starts with the water, the source of which is often decisive for the location of a distillery. The grain is also important. Together with a sophisticated manufacturing process that has mostly been tried and tested over many decades, it is above all the long storage and maturation of the whiskey in an exquisite barrel that defines its true quality and reputation. For this, not only the type of wood is essential, such as European or American oak. The earlier use of the barrel, the microclimate or the storage time also determine the taste nuances.

In order for an excellent whiskey to achieve real top prices, it not only has to be many decades old, it also has to be rare. Limited bottlings are in demand. The region or the country of its origin also play an important role. Whiskey traditionally comes from Ireland or Scotland, but now also from America and Japan. A unique story to tell, like a forgotten box in the ice of Antarctica or in the cellar of a castle, should also drive prices.