Irish Distillers – Pernod Ricard, have announced that they will be releasing the world’s most expensive Irish whiskey today. Just 44 bottles of this incredibly rare whiskey, will be released with a price tag of €35,000 per-bottle.
“Midleton Very Rare Silent Distillery Chapter One” is the first of 6 annual releases that will feature spirit from the Old Midleton Distillery, which closed its doors for the last time in 1975, to be replaced by the current facility of the New Midleton Distillery. These annual releases will range in age between 45 and 50 years old and will be released annually until 2025, which will coincide with the Old Midleton Distillery’s 200th birthday.
This inaugural release is a 45 year-old Peated Single Malt whiskey, which was distilled under then Master Distiller, Max Crockett, who was succeeded by his son, Barry Crockett, in 1981. The whiskey was laid down in 1974 and wholly matured in third fill sherry casks, giving the spirit “notes of ripe honeydew melon, red berries and sweet spices of toasted oak“, according to the Irish Distillers’ press release.
According to Irish Distillers, Old Midleton Distillery were experimenting with peated malt distillation from 1964 to 1974 and this will be the first release of peated malt distilled in Old Midleton, furthermore, this will be the only release in this series that will be peated, according to Irish Distillers. This decade of experimentation with peated malt in the distillery offers a brief window of insight into both the experimentation at the distillery and likely relfecting the expectation of consumer whiskey trends in this period.
An incredibly momentous release from Ireland’s most popular (traditionally Single Pot Still producing) distillery. Unfortuantely as this is a ultra premium release with a specially curated amount of bottles, this is destined to shared among the elites of the whiskey drinking connisseurs and collectors in the world. Irish Distillers’ Master Distiller Emeritus, Barry Crockett understands that the €35,000 price point is a lot of money but he apparently notes that “anyone buying a Jack B Yeats would be unlikely to be questioned about the price tag”.
The bottle itself is a hand blown and hand etched Waterford Crystal decanter with each bottle individually numbered. Each decanter is housed in its own handcrafted case, designed by Irish designer John Galvin, who utilised wood for the project from 200 year old whiskey vats (presumably from the Old Midlton Distillery).
If nothing this will likely be the most stylish whiskey to ever hit the Irish whiskey market, if not one of the most intriguing due to its unique contents, further securing Midleton Very Rare‘s position atop the Super Premium Irish whiskey segment. There is no word currently on the alcoholic content of this inaugural release, although, in November of last year, Irish Distillers did recieve US TTB back label approval for a Midleton Very Rare Single Malt at 51.2% ABV (102.4 Proof), which could be an indication of the bottling strength (pictured below).
This release is rumoured to be launched later today at an exclusive press event in London, England.