When it comes to new spirits, it takes a lot to shock me these days. In my career, I’ve tasted all kinds of concoctions: some fine, some truly wonderful, some truly bad. But there’s a new crop of terrifyingly expensive liquor whose prices are so high they may make me scream. Be warned: These drinks may be a delicious treat but their prices are no Halloween trick. Why so pricy? In most cases, you’re paying for exclusivity. These are extremely limited bottlings that more often than not have been aged for an inordinately long time. Read on if you dare!
Patrón en Lalique: Serie 2 ($7,500)
While liquor bottles have certainly gotten ever more impressive, you know that a spirit is truly top-shelf when it comes in a beautiful, statuesque Lalique bottle. To create this special release, Patrón partnered with the legendary French glass firm to produce this stunning crystal decanter, which is filled with a blend of extra añejo tequila. There are just 299 bottles available and each comes with its own rotating display case.
Port Ellen 37 Year Old ($3,500)
Just in time for the holidays, Diageo is releasing less than 3,000 bottles of extremely rare Port Ellen Single Malt Whisky. The Scotch is particularly sought after, since the Islay distillery closed in1983 but a limited amount of its whisky is still available. (It’s what the industry calls a “ghost distillery.”) However, that will soon change. Diageo recently announced that it has plans to bring back the brand.
Bowmore 1966 50-Year-Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky ($30,000)
Yes, this bottle of Bowmore actually costs $30,000. (There are just 74 available.) And it’s in fact the third such extravagantly priced 50-year-old Scotch the distillery has released during the last few years as part of its Vault Legends Collection. I’m not sure how many more middle-aged casks the brand is sitting on, but I imagine there are a few left in its special No. 1 Vault. Amazingly, these extra-old Bowmore releases have notes of exotic fruit (think mango and papaya) with just a hint of smoke.
Yamazaki Mizunara Cask 2017 ($1,000)
At just a grand, this year’s release of Yamazaki Mizunara Cask seems like, comparatively, a good value. The 18-year-old Japanese whisky is partially aged in a very rare cask made from indigenous and extremely expensive Mizunara oak. It imbues the spirit with hints of sandal wood, which creates a very unique flavor.