51-Year-Old Whiskies Normally Cost an Arm and a Leg. This One’s Free.

Here’s how to try a dram

By Kirk Miller

 
Craigellachie 51
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26 October 2018

When we talk 50+ year whiskies, the cost to imbibe usually hits five, six or, just recently, seven figures.

You know what’s a better price? Free.

That’s the promise behind Craigellachie 51, the half-century (plus one) aged single malt that was distilled on Dec. 22, 1962, matured in a refill bourbon oak cask and put in glass in 2014. The 51 bottles of the rare tipple are now available via a lottery — with a slight catch.

Over the course of the next year, the Bacardi-owned Craigellachie will host four events in the U.S., England, South Africa and Australia. For the London edition in November, for example, 75 winners will be drawn at random to attend a pop-up at London’s oldest whisky shop, with tastings of the 13-, 17- and 51-year expressions.

Getting to the events is your problem, but we figure a $1,500 flight is still a bargain.

Is it worth it? Depends. The brand’s malt master Stephanie Macleod described the whisky as “muscular” with notes of “distinct umami.”

Main photo via Craigellachie

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