In just a couple of years, the Distillers One of One Charity Auction has seen some magnificent expressions from legacy distilleries across Scotland, each one bringing out some of its oldest and rarest single malts, presented in one-of-a-kind decanters and displays. The inaugural event in Edinburgh in 2021 saw Bowmore’s oldest whisky yet, a 51-year-old single malt that sold for half a million dollars. For the auction’s follow-up, the Islay staple has outdone itself yet again with an even older whisky.
Dubbed STAC, this new single malt from Bowmore is the oldest we’ve ever seen at 55 years. First distilled in 1962, the liquid was aged for over half a century in second-fill hogshead casks before 1.5L of it was placed in this one-off glass decanter, with the winner also getting a 100mL bottle in case they didn’t want to crack open the large bottle itself. Inspired and named after the sea stacks on Bowmore’s Islay home, the beautiful display is made of partially-colored hand-blown glass. Tasting notes on the whisky were provided by the distillery, who remarks that the nose will possess aromas of orchard fruit, honey, pineapple, honeydew, pecan nuts, and subtle menthol. On the palate, you (or whoever’s lucky enough to win this) will get licorice, cocoa nibs, dark roasted coffee beans, caramel, shortbread, toasted oak, and peat smoke, giving way to a long, dry finish.
Founded in 1779, Bowmore is undoubtedly one of the most revered names in Scotch whisky and the oldest of the Islay region, which is known for its peat-forward single malts. The oldest in the company’s standard range is its 25 Year, with recent vintage seeing limited-edition releases of 50- and 52-year-old single malts.
Expected to sell for anywhere between $380,000 and $600,000 or more, Bowmore STAC is arguably the highlight of this year’s Distillers One of One Charity Auction. The auction takes place in Edinburgh on October 5 with proceeds going to Scotland’s Youth Action Fund, benefitting disadvantaged young adults.