Auction Update March 10, 2023: Karuizawa, Bowmore, and WhistlePig Excel
March 10, 2023 –––––– Jonny McCormick
Karuizawa single malt whisky led the latest Whisky Auctioneer sale, with some high prices paid for collectible Bowmore and a pair of Jacks from the Hanyu Ichiro’s Malt Card series. Unusually, there was no Macallan among the 20 highest-sold lots as several expressions failed to meet their reserve prices.
Auction ended February 26th
- Scotch: Bowmore 1964 35 year old Cask No. 3709, $26,278. Only 99 bottles of this single cask were released for a UK liquor shop chain in 2000.
- American: WhistlePig The Boss Hog 1st Edition, $9,558. The first release of this series continues to command the highest auction prices.
- Japanese: Karuizawa Noh Whisky Multi-Vintages No. 1, $8,122. A blend of distillates from Karuizawa distilled between 1981–1984.
- English: The Lakes Quatrefoil Collection Love, $2,180. The final part of the quartet showcases sherry cask maturation, following previous editions: Faith, Hope, and Luck.
Auction ended February 26th
- American: Old Fitzgerald Bottled in Bond, $8,800. A gallon bottle of 6 year old Old Fitzgerald distilled at the Stitzel-Weller Distillery.
- Scotch: Macallan 30 year old Sherry Oak (2022 release), $4,550. The sherry oak edition usually sells for more than the Double Cask edition
- Japanese: Karuizawa Cask Strength, $3,625. A blend of single malts from Karuizawa Distillery bottled at 61.7%.
- Irish: Midleton Very Rare Vintage 1990, $1,530. The 7th vintage in the long-running series, and the first to come in a wooden box.
Auction ended March 1st
- Scotch: Dalmore 1926 50 year old, $15,645. This ceramic decanter was bottled in the 1970s.
- Japanese: S.M.W.S. 19.110 (Yamazaki) 19 year old, $3,851. A cask strength single cask Japanese whisky matured in a first-fill Spanish oak sherry butt.
- Irish: Midleton 25 year old, $963. Distilled in 1973 at Old Midleton Distillery.
Auction Ended March 6th
- Japanese: Karuizawa 1965 Japonisme Edition LMDW 60th Anniversary, $72,280. One of 60 bottles released by the Parisian whisky shop La Maison du Whisky as the final part of its trilogy of Karuizawa 1965 vintages.
- Scotch: Bowmore 1964 35 year old Cask No. 3709, $26,503. Being distilled in the same year as the legendary Black Bowmore has made this rare bottle particularly valuable.
- American: Pappy Van Winkle Family Reserve 23 year old 2003 release, $9,758. Bourbon distilled at Stitzel-Weller Distillery and the gold wax closure on this early release account for the high hammer price.
- Irish: Midleton Very Rare Vintage 1986, $4,337. The third release of the blend from then master distiller Barry Crockett.
Lot of the Week
Lot: Grant’s 25 year old Character Jug
Sold: March 3rd at McTear’s, Glasgow
Hammer Price: $168
This hand-painted Royal Doulton decanter depicts Glenfiddich Distillery founder William Grant dressed in his Major’s uniform of The Gordon Highlanders. The jug’s handle on the reverse is crafted to look like whisky casks, and the blend is poured out of the toorie on top of his glengarry (the red pom-pom on the top of his hat).
Bottles to watch in auctions ending in the next week:
March 12th, Unicorn Auctions: WhistlePig The Boss Hog 1st edition. Bidding has already outstripped the hammer price at Whisky Hammer last month.
March 14th, Sotheby’s, Paris: Yamazaki 55 year old. This rare Japanese whisky has a great chance of being the highest-priced bottle of the year so far.
March 14th, Whisky.auction: Dalmore 45 year old. One of 500 bottles released in 2018 for $12,500, this will only sell if it hits its reserve.
March 17th, Sotheby’s, New York: Old Rip Van Winkle Family Selection 23 year old. Sotheby’s will seek to achieve a higher hammer price than the bottle sold by Unicorn Auctions last month for $27,600. See more details on this sale here.