This rich, intense whisky from The Macallan takes its name after the distillery’s six pillars and is part of The Macallan’s 1824 Master Series.
Situated on a ridge above the banks of the River Spey, the Easter Elchies House has been the spiritual home of The Macallan for over three centuries. In 1820, Alexander Reid began renting the home from Sir Lewis Grant of Grant. Reid was a farmer, and soon after he sowed the fields surrounding the home with barley, Reid established the first licensed distillery on the estate, which he named Macallan after an ancient church that had been destroyed by fire during the 15th century. In the winter — when there was little activity on the farm — Reid would ferment and distill his excess grains into whisky, which was often drunk straight from the still or sold to travelers passing through the town.
Today, the Macallan Estate encompasses 370 acres, 95 of which are devoted to the production of the Macallan Estate's Minstrel barley (a single acre produces about 2.5 tons of barley each year, enough to yield 1,800 bottles of The Macallan). In addition, the distillery contracts with farmers to purchase barley that is low in nitrogen and high in starch, resulting in a rich and oily whisky.
After the barley is harvested in late August and early September, it is malted before being mashed in one of The Macallan's two mash tuns, a process that takes between four and eight hours. Then, the barley is fermented with a specially cultured yeast before being distilled twice through The Macallan's copper-pot stills. The copper comprising the stills acts as a catalyst, and enhances the formation of sweet esters while minimizing impurities such as sulphur. In addition, the curiously small stills — some of "the smallest stills within the Scotch whisky industry," according to production manager Alexander Tweedie — produce a whisky with a heavy, oily flavor.
Following distillation, The Macallan distillers remove the heads and tails of the whisky and collect approximately 16% of the spirit to fill into casks for maturation. This "cut," which is among the highest of any Scottish distillery, results in a more full-bodied and and rich whisky.
A recent addition to The Macallan’s 1824 Master Series, The Macallan No. 6 Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky takes its name from the six pillars of The Macallan’s heritage, which include the Easter Elchies House (an 18th century manor that remains the “Spiritual Home” of The Macallan) and the distillery’s “Curiously Small Stills.” Deep mahogany in color, The Macallan No. 6 is housed in an angular Lalique crystal decanter, successfully uniting two of The Macallans “masters” — whisky and crystal — in one spectacular project.
The Macallan No. 6 has an intense, fruity aroma, with notes of raisins, figs and dates. The palate is filled with rich oak, as well as early notes such as leather and tobacco. The finish is at once subtle and astounding, with a dry, nutty character accented by toffee and cream.
“The stunning designs and overall imprint of this new collection are not only worthy of some of our most complex and precious single malt whiskies, they celebrate the very foundations that make The Macallan so special – our glorious range of natural colour and the outstanding quality of our casks,” says Ken Grier, director at the Edington Group which owns The Macallan.
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86 (43% ABV)
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Intense, fruity aroma, with notes of raisins, figs and dates. The palate is filled with rich oak, as well as early notes such as leather and tobacco. The finish is at once subtle and astounding, with a dry, nutty character accented by toffee and cream.