THIS KARUIZAWA 52YO IS THE MOST EXPENSIVE BOTTLE OF JAPANESE WHISKY AT USD435,273
By Siulan Law Mathews DipWSET
Against all the odds caused by COVID-19 around the world, a new auction record was achieved for a bottle of Japanese whisky in London last week.
A bottle of Karuizawa 52 YO Zodiac Rat Cask #5627 1960 was sold for £363,000 (USD435,273) in Sotheby’s London auction and became the most expensive Japanese whisky ever sold.
The previous record was held by a bottle of 50YO Yamazaki whisky. It fetched HKD2.659million (USD343,000) at a Bonhams Hong Kong auction in August 2018.
The record-breaking bottle of Karuizawa 52 YO is one of the oldest ever released by Karuizawa , this iconic bottle is one of only 41 that were produced, each uniquely identified by an individual netsuke carved from the oak cask head of cask #5627.
The price achieved by far exceeded its pre-sale estimate of £160,000-220,000. Sotheby’s said the successful bidder is an Asian private collector.
Fine and rare Macallans also did well in the auction. A rarely seen unbroken vertical collection of Macallan whisky, The Macallan in Lalique Six Pillars Collection, was sold for £423,500 (USD507,819). Pre-sale estimate of this collection was £320,000-480,000.
A decanter containing the oldest whisky ever to be released from The Macallan Distillery – The Macallan Lalique Genesis Decanter 72 YO – fetched £84,700 (USD101,5640. Pre-sale estimate was £70,000-100,000.
Sotheby’s said bidders from 21 countries across Asia, Europe and North America participated in the suction.
Jamie Ritchie, worldwide head of Sotheby’s wine said: “Against a backdrop of extraordinary circumstance, the persistence and commitment of collectors came through in the sales, where a bottle of Japanese whisky became the most valuable ever sold, accompanied by strong prices for Scotch whisky, led by the Macallan in Lalique Decanters.”
(the writer can be contacted at: email@example.com)
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