Ardbeg sold a barrel of whiskey for $19 million.

The Ardbeg distillery recently sold what could be the most expensive barrel of whiskey in history. Far exceeding the cost of The Macallan’s “forgotten” whiskey barrel in 1988 that sold a few months ago for $1.3 million.

In an unprecedented auction, Ardbeg, the malt producer located on the Hebridean island of Islay, Scotland, sold a barrel of whisky, known as Cask No. 3, for £16m, equivalent to around $19m to an anonymous collector in Asia.

The whiskey billed as the oldest Ardbeg Scotch whiskey ever released, it was distilled and barreled in 1975 and will continue to age for another five years under the supervision of the distillers.

The buyer will receive 88 bottles each year from his barrel, a total of 440 bottles of 700 milliliters.

For what barrel Ardbeg whiskey was sold at such a high cost

The 1975 barrel survived a difficult time in Ardbeg’s history. The distillery, established in 1815, struggled to stay afloat during the lean years for Scotch whiskey and survived two near-closures in the 1980s and mid-1990s.

“During the 1970s, most of the distillery’s spirits were blended with other whiskeys and released onto the market, so very few whiskeys of this maturity exist”explains Vine Pair.

The distillery notes that the aromas are nutty, herbal and smoky, while its tar, espresso and spearmint flavors have an astonishing finesse for a whiskey of such age.

“So little stock survives from this era, that this barrel is truly unique. And its complex flavors are testament to the extraordinary skill of the Ardbeg team that has cared for it for decades,” the distillery said in a statement.

“Just 25 years ago, Ardbeg was on the brink of extinction, but today it is one of the most sought after whiskeys in the world,” CEO Thomas Moradpour said.

The amount paid per barrel of whiskey is more than double what the distillery owner paid for the company and all of its shares in 1997. according to data from the Financial Times.

Ardbeg claims it will donate £1m (about $1.2m) from the sale of the barrel of whiskey to charities on the Isle of Islay.

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