Karuizawa makes a notable appearance this action with a large number of single casks, including the excellent selections from La Maison du Whisky in the Artifices series, whose labels are designed by Singapore artist Warren Khong. We also have many bottles from the 36 Views of Mount Fuji (富嶽三十六景, Fugaku-sanjūrokkei) series featuring Karuizawa from its last vintages (1999-2000) illustrated with the famous prints created by Hokusai (1760-1849).
From Suntory, the auction is rich in Hibikis, with editions ranging from 12 year olds to 30 year olds, notably including a special edition of the latter presented in a ceramic decanter manufactured in Arita, the birthplace of Japanese ceramics and still today one of its main production centres. Yamazaki also stands out with a single cask distilled in 1990 and bottled in 2008—one of the sherry casks the distillery masters so well. This edition was part of the sadly departed series The Cask produced by Suntory in the 2000s.
Not to be outdone, Nikka has two Yoichi single casks distilled in 1988 and 1991, as well as a Yoichi 20 Year Old 1989 and a Miyagikyo from the same year and series. And, last but not least, there is an outstanding gift set released by Nikka in 2004 to mark its 70th anniversary composed of one Yoichi, one Miyagikyo, one Coffey Grain and a blend of the three, all matured for 12 years and bottled at 58% ABV.
Gordon & MacPhail
For many years, Gordon & MacPhail was licensed to bottle whisky for a number of distilleries, often in Speyside, where the venerable independent bottler has its offices. Such was the case for Longmorn in the 1970s and 1980s. This relationship enabled Gordon & MacPhail to amass numerous casks, resulting in the fantastic single cask releases distilled in the 1960s and 1970s. Other distilleries with close links to the bottler, such as Strathisla and Glenlivet, will also go under the hammer in this auction.
From Signatory Vintage, we see a return to roots with the Prestonfield range, originally developed for the eponymous hotel in Edinburgh where Andrew Symington worked. After founding Signatory Vintage in 1988, Symington created The Prestonfield Whisky Co. and continued to release bottlings, including a Clynelish 1973 and a Bowmore 1972—both deeply exotic—a Bowmore 1975, and a Bowmore 1990, all available at this edition of FSA.
Compass Box treats us to a couple of noteworthy editions, including the mysterious bottlings titled The General and Lady Luck, and the mischievous Last Vatted Grain. All great ways to discover the breadth of John Glaser’s talent, truly one of the most skilled master blenders of his generation.
A few exceptional rums bottled by Velier take centre stage, with a number of Caroni bottlings, notably from the Employees range, and the single cask #4655 selected by Belgian distributor The Nectar. There are also the superb magnums in the series illustrated with photos from the great Eliott Erwitt, and, for the first time, the Flora Antillarum collection dedicated to the distilleries of Guadeloupe. Finally, keep an eye out for the highly accomplished Uitvlugt 1997 ULR (Uitvlugt Light Rum).
Representing Jamaica, we have Hampden, Worthy Park, Clarendon Long Pond and Appleton with the famous selections from Velier—most notably the Hearts Collection—as well as gems from other independent bottlers including Kill Devil (Edition Spirits) and Cadenhead.
West Indian rum
French overseas rums are well-represented at this auction, with lots of special editions from La Favorite and J.M, old vintages of Bally, Depaz and Trois Rivières, single casks from Savanna and a very old Neisson 19 Years.
Hennessy offers us a luxurious trio of iconic editions presented in crystal decanters, composed of Hennessy Paradis, Hennessy Paradis Impérial and Richard Hennessy. These blends contain very venerable eaux de vie, some of which are literally hundreds of years old.