About Macallan Whiskey
The Macallan whiskey brand is one of the earliest distillers of single malt whiskey in Scotland since 1824. Today, the Macallan is considered as the “Rolls Royce of Single Malts” and the “Dom Perignon of Scotch”. Two luxurious epithets that owe to their careful, deliberate whiskey-making process.
From one of the first legally licensed distillers in Scotland, Alexander Reid, the legacy has been carefully passed on for many generations until now with the Whisky Mastery Team. Today, the Macallan single malt whiskey is processed in the award-winning distillery located in Speyside, Scotland surrounded by a 485-acre estate.
The Macallan Distillery Ltd. became a subsidiary of the Edrington Group in 1999. Aside from Macallan, Edrington Group also has other whiskeys and rum brands like The Famouse Grouse, Highland Park, The Glenthroles, Brugal, Noble Oak, and Naked.
Macallan is a single malt whiskey — meaning it was distilled at one distillery.
But not all whiskeys taste the same. The Macallan whiskey has a characteristic fruity flavor and a natural color.
For the barley, they use the Concerto barley and invested as well in an exclusive strain of barley called Momentum.
They use River Spey’s water which is considered as one of the best salmon rivers in Scotland. The Macallan Estate is surrounded by 2 miles of River Spey.
For the yeast, they have replaced brewer’s yeast and created a recipe for the “distillers yeast”.
Where to Buy Macallan Whiskey?
You can buy Macallan whiskey from their official website but make sure to check their delivery information within the U.S. Alternatively, you can also order from online stores that ship to the U.S. (e.g. Drizly and ReserveBar).
According to Forbes, Costco is the world’s largest retailer of The Macallan. If you are frequent shoppers at grocery stores, depending on availability, you can chance upon stocks in supermarket chains like Walmart, Safeway, and Kroger, among others. Some large pharmacies like CVS and Walgreens also sell distilled spirits.
But you’ll likely be able to find Macallan Whiskey in liquor stores such as Total Wine, The Whiskey Shop, and Bevmo, for example. Or you can also order through grocery delivery apps like Instacart.
Macallan Whiskey Prices
|Sherry Oak||Sherry Oak 12||43% (86 proof)||750ml||$69.99|
|Sherry Oak 18||750ml||$319.99|
|Sherry Oak 25||750ml||$2349.99|
|Sherry Oak 30||750ml||$6899.99|
|Double Cask||Gold||40% (80 proof)||750ml||$73.99|
|Double Cask 12||43% (86 proof)||750ml||$62.99|
|Double Cask 15||43% (86 proof)||750ml||$120.99|
|Double Cask 18||43% (86 proof)||750ml||$319.98|
|Triple Cask Matured||Triple Cask 12||43% (86 proof)||750ml||$72.99|
|Triple Cask 15||750ml||$124.99|
|The Masters Decanter||Reflexion||43% (86 proof)||750ml||$1539.99|
|The Quest Collection||The Macallan Quest||40% (80 proof)||750ml||$85.89|
|Lumina||41.3% (82.6 proof)||750ml||$105.11|
|Rare Cask||2021 Release||43% (86 proof)||750ml||$284.99|
|Estate||43% (86 proof)||750ml||$238|
Macallan Whiskey Buying Guide
Full-bodied whiskey matured in Oloroso sherry-seasoned oaks from Jerez, Spain, ranging from 12 to 40 years old.
Classic Macallan whiskey matured in a perfect balance between sherry-seasoned American and European oaks.
Classic Macallan whiskey matured in European and American sherry-seasoned oaks, plus ex-bourbon American oak casks. This was also previously called the Fine Oak series.
Macallan whiskeys that show the range of natural colors from first-fill and refill oak casks.
Celebrates the quest to find the finest oak to bring out the best flavor and aroma of the Macallan whiskey.
Ruby mahogany-colored whiskeys from the rarest sherry-seasoned oak casks
Macallan whiskey made from homegrown barley of The Macallan Estate. It is distilled once a year for a single week
How Good is Macallan Whiskey?
The Macallan whiskey is an easy-to-love scotch whiskey with its sweet taste and fruity flavor aroma. According to reviews from Flaviar, the Macallan Sherry Oak 18 had great reviews with a special mention of a very smooth finish. Even though it’s hyped and quite pricey, customers find great value in their money.
The Macallan is also known for releasing a limited edition collection which can be a good investment for alcohol enthusiasts. Every year since 2016, they release limited editions — from Edition No.1 to No. 6. The fan favorite seems to be Edition No. 4.
The Best Way(s) to Drink Macallan Whiskey
The Macallan Whiskey has an incredibly smooth finish as a sipping whiskey. It can be sipped neat at room temperature. It’s also better to warm up your whiskey by curling your hand around the drinking glass. This is recommended as the best way to drink a Macallan Whiskey.
But it also goes well with cocktails because of its fruity flavor and aroma. Some of the good-tasting cocktails with Macallan Whiskey are:
1) The Old Fashioned
With Sherry Oak 12 as its base, other ingredients consist of Angostura bitters, Canadian maple syrup, and zest peel. Serve with ice cubes.
2) The Macallan Speyside Sipper
Macallan Double Cask 12 with membrillo, Spright’s Delight Tea, grapefruit, and lime.
3) The Macallan Smoky Sour
A smoky and frothy cocktail made with Macalan Double Cask 12, fresh lemon juice, cinnamon dark syrup, Lapsang Souchong tea syrup, and egg white.
The Macallan Distillery Experience
The Macallan Distillery was opened to visitors in May 2018, after 6 years in the making. Through a 10-meter high glass wall, the visitors get to see the production and the people behind the Macallan whiskey.
The Macallan Estate is open for viewing on weekends from 09:45-18:00 at Easter Elchies, Craigellachie, AB38 9RX, Scotland.
The Whiskey Making Process
From the barley fields, the process goes to the still pots. The Macallan refers to them as “Curiously Small Stills” because they’re one of the smallest copper pot stills around Speyside, with their heights not exceeding 12 feet.
The original unique design of the Macallan pot stills allows maximum contact between the new-make spirit and the copper. On top of the design, the distillation process is also run slowly at a trickle. Thus, the result is a dense, viscous, and full-bodied spirit.
From the still pots, the distilled new-make spirit are filled in oak casks. The European and American oak casks that store the spirits for maturation give it its full natural color and 80% of The Macallan’s flavors and aromas. The oak trees are harvested from the forests of Jerez, Spain, and from the U.S. (Ohio, Missouri, and Kentucky). Approximately, the Macallan sherry-seasoned oak takes 6 years to make — from the harvesting of oak trees to filling with their Macallan spirit.
Alternatives to Macallan Whiskey
If you’re looking for cheaper alternatives to The Macallan whiskey, here are similar-tasting single malt Scotch whiskey matured in sherry-seasoned oaks:
- Glendronach 12 — its natural flavoring, dried fruit and Christmas spice, is a product of their ageing process using Oloroso and Pedro Ximenez casks.
- Glenfarclas 12 — a sherry-seasoned whiskey but unlike Macallan’s, they use bigger still pots. Its taste is distinctly dates and walnut cake with toffee apple and a touch of smoke.
- Aberlour A’Bunadh Alba — a Speyside scotch that’s aged in American oak ex-bourbon barrels. Its aroma is reminiscent to ripe red apples, pear, honey, vanilla, and a bit of cinnamon. While its sweet and smooth whisky tastes like citrus zest, dried apple, and cinnamon.
- Aberlour 12 Non Chill-Filtered — none of its whiskey was chill-filtered in the making, which means that it kept all of its flavor from the maturing stage with the sherry oak barrels. Aside from its fruity and nutty taste, there is also dark chocolate returns for the finish.
- Glengoyne 18 — comparable to Macallan’s Triple Cask Series, this one is also made from European and American sherry oak barrels, plus hand-selected quality oak refill casks. Rich apples and spicy vanilla dominate its flavor.