The Dalmore Luminary: Rare whisky sells for nearly £95,000 at auction

A bottle of Dalmore whisky has sold for nearly £95,000 at auction, encased in a glass sculpture which was hand polished for 500 hours.

The Dalmore Luminary No.2 ‘The Rare’ is the second release in The Luminary Series, a three-part partnership between The Dalmore and V&A Dundee.

The one-of-a-kind release marries the worlds of spirits, art and design, with the striking amber glass sculpture around the 49 Year Old Single Malt designed by Melodie Leung, a director at Zaha Hadid Architects.

The rare dram sold for £93,750 at Sotheby’s, with all proceeds from the £75,000 hammer price going to the V&A.

‘This is a thoroughly deserved result for a true collector’s piece that combines to brilliant effect a highly aged liquid, a high concept design and a worthy cause,’ said Jonny Fowle, from Sotheby’s.

‘The Dalmore is an icon of the whisky world and this second iteration in their Luminary series encapsulates all the key elements collectors are looking for in today’s premium whisky market.’

A true collector’s piece for whisky aficionados and art connoisseurs, the collaboration offers one of The Dalmore’s finest spirits.

The malt has been matured in American white oak ex-Bourbon casks and finished in an assemblage that includes a rare Port Colheita Pipe 1963, a 30-year-old Apostoles Sherry Cask and hand-selected bourbon barrels.

The liquid is then further finished in a 1951 virgin oak cask and hand toasted by The Dalmore’s master maker Gregg Glass.

Bottled at 40.6% ABV, it has notes of vanilla, dark berries and roasted chestnuts with sugared almonds, plums and wood cacao.

Only three bottles and two sculptures have and will ever be created.

It took hundreds of hours of work to create the glass structure, which was placed in a kiln in a handmade mould to take the glass to temperature before lowering one degree at a time across a tense 12 week period.

Weighing a substantial 80kg, the sculpture’s liquid-like texture and gloss finish comes from over 500 hours of hand polishing.

In addition to the set sold at auction at Sotheby’s, a second complete set will be held in archive at the distillery’s Highland home and one further decanter will be saved for a final Luminary Series Compendium to come in the future, which will include all three releases.

Read more Whisky news here.

Subscribe to read the latest issue of Scottish Field.