Founded in 1824, The Macallan was one of the first distilleries in Scotland to be legally licensed. Since then, The Macallan has built a reputation as one of the world’s truly great single malt whiskies.
To fully appreciate The Macallan, we must understand the contributing influences of Scotland, Spain and North America, and of their respective natural raw materials, together with the methods and the craftsmanship, perfected over the generations, that combine to give such outstanding quality and distinctive character.
The Macallan single malt Scotch whisky is the result of a deep-rooted and unwavering commitment to sourcing, crafting and seasoning only the most exceptional oak casks. At the heart of The Macallan story is the imitable 12 Years Old. This time allows the brand’s casks to work their magic in imparting the flavours, aromas and natural colours defining The Macallan. Each of the brand’s 12 Year Olds showcase the influence of oak on the specific styles of whiskies they shape.
The Macallan distillery was founded in 1824 by Alexander Reid, a barley farmer and school teacher. Farmers had been making whisky on their farms in the area for centuries, distilling their surplus barley during the quieter winter months. In the winter, with little activity on the farm, the barley would be fermented and distilled into whisky. The cold, wet weather provided plenty of cooling water for the stills. The whisky would be drunk new, straight from the still. Any surplus was stored for consumption in the summer or transported to more distant markets. In the spring, the cycle would begin again.
The Macallan’s farmland is very fertile, with light, alluvial soils, ideal for growing barley. There is also pasture for sheep and highland cattle, woodland, beetle banks, uncultivated field margins, areas of unharvested crop and un-mown grassland to attract biodiversity. The river Spey, one of Scotland’s most famous salmon rivers, borders the estate to the south and south-east. The scale and diversity of the estate is unique among distilleries and is managed in harmony with the beautiful landscape.
The Macallan’s curiously small spirit stills are the smallest on Speyside. Their unique size and shape give the spirit maximum contact with the copper, helping to concentrate the ‘new make’ spirit and provide those rich, fruity, full-bodied flavours so characteristic of The Macallan. There are fourteen of these curiously small stills, crafted from copper, each holding an initial ‘charge’ of 3,900 litres. These stills are so famous that they have appeared on the back of a Bank of Scotland £10 banknote!
Sherry Oak 12 Years Old
the original 100% sherry seasoned Macallan. Influenced by a predominance of sherry seasoned Spanish oak casks, this is an intensely rich single malt with dried fruits and wood spice character.
Double Cask 12 Years Old
a distinctive American oak style Macallan. Reflecting the perfect balance of American and European oak casks, this is a smoothly sweet, indulgent and balanced single malt with a delicate flavour of vanilla, citrus and light oak, yet with familiar notes of rich fruit, sherry and wood spice.
Fine Oak 12 Years Old
triple cask matured in a combination of sherry seasoned American and European oak casks and American oak casks seasoned with bourbon. The result is a diverse yet subtle style of whisky with flavours of citrus, vanilla and coconut in abundance.
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Life on the Island
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