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The Macallan M Is No Ordinary Single Malt

Richard Carleton Hacker

The rich amber-brown of the Macallan M single-malt whisky—a special iteration of the Macallan contained in a hand-blown 750 mL Lalique crystal decanter—is noticeably deeper and darker than even the Scotch maker’s iconic 25-year-old whisky. Yet there is no age statement on this bottle, for the spirit is composed of whisky from seven casks selected by the Macallan’s master whisky maker, Bob Dalgarno, after more than two years of searching through the Macallan’s vast cellars of over 195,000 barrels. The oldest whisky in it was distilled in 1940, and all of them were matured in first-fill oloroso-sherry casks. In the M, Dalgarno has produced something unlike anything the Macallan has ever offered.

The Macallan’s classic resiny, raisiny richness is abundant in the M, as are plump cherry and fruit-filled sherried overtones, but then comes notes of lemons, leather, cedar, apples, violets, and a long, tobacco-laden finish. Bottled in 2013 at 89 proof, the Macallan M is intended to be an ongoing (albeit rare) addition to the brand’s 1824 series of top-tier whiskies. The Macallan is initially offering just 1,750 bottles, priced at $4,500 each, with 355 reserved for the United States. (www.themacallan.com)

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