The 'Holy Grail of Scotch' Smashes All Alcohol Records, Sells for $1.5 Million

A one-ounce pour from this one-of-a-kind bottle would cost you around $60,000.

By Ethan L. Johns
November 29, 2018

Image: Christie’s

Some say that the Holy Grail gives eternal life to the drinker. This Holy Grail, however, merely confers an elevated level of socioeconomic status.

A hand-painted bottle of 1926 60-year-old Macallan whisky, dubbed the “Holy Grail” of Scotch, sold at a Christie’s auction in London on Thursday morning for $1.5 million, shattering records and blowing the minds of booze lovers everywhere.

The purchase set a new record for the most money ever spent on a single bottle of wine or spirits.

The unique bottle was one of 40 filled in 1986 after the liquor had spent 60 years in a barrel. It was the only bottle to feature commissioned artwork from the Irish muralist Michael Dillon, depicting the Easter Elchies House of The Macallan. It was last sold in 1999 at London’s Fortnum and Mason.

As a point of comparison, two bottles of the very same juice—one with a label by Valerio Adami and the other with a label by Sir Peter Blake, who designed the album cover for the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band—set world records when they sold as a pair back in March for just over $1.1 million.

Whether or not this Grail grants the drinker eternal life, we may never know. A whisky this expensive will likely just be bought and sold as an investment—not as an agricultural product meant to be consumed.

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About Ethan L. Johns

Ethan is the Food News Writer at Genius Kitchen. An expert on the Parisian bistrot, he likes bitters and salted butters, and is no fan of dessert unless it's made with fruit. His hobbies include reading up on the history of borscht and attempting to roll perfect couscous by hand. Twits & Instagram @EthanLJohns