Whisky Focus - Macallan 15 and 18 Year Old Double Cask

Macallan Extends Double Cask Range With A 15 and 18 Year Old


3rd July 2020
The Macallan has extended their Double Cask range with the addition of a 15 Year Old and 18 Year Old expression.

The Macallan Double Cask Range 12, 15 and 18 Year Old

The Macallan aficionados amongst you will recall that the first Macallan Double Cask expression launched back in October 2016, The Macallan 12 Year Old Double Cask, it became the Macallan Double Cask Range in 2018 when it was joined by the Macallan Double Cask Gold which was basically the rebranded Macallan Gold from the discontinued cask focused Macallan 1824 Series.

The Macallan has now extended the range with the addition of two new age statement expressions, The Macallan 15 Year Old Double Cask and the The Macallan 18 Year Old Double Cask.

The two new additions to the Double Cask range is the first significant releases in the Macallan core range under the watch of Kirsteen Campbell who joined The Macallan as its new Master Whisky Maker in October 2019. Kirsteen heads The Macallan Whisky Mastery Team, a six person team who all contribute to whisky creation at the Macallan and they have stuck to the tried and tested Double Cask formula for the two new expressions.

The new Macallan 15 & 18 Year Old Double Cask whiskies have been created by bringing new oak from America to Spain, where the oak casks were crafted and Sherry-seasoned before being shipped to the Macallan's distillery on Speyside to mature for at least 15 & 18 years respectively. The whisky matured in the Sherry-seasoned new American oak casks was then united with whisky aged in Sherry-seasoned European oak casks.

In days gone by 18 years has always been a key point in the maturation of The Macallan, I am sure that the Macallan fans amongst you will recall a number of stunning Macallan 18 year old whisky releases over the years, with many believing that sherry cask matured Macallan peaks around this age, it will certainly be interesting to see what Kirsteen and the Macallan team have created.

Master Whisky Maker Kirsteen Campbell commented on the new Double Cask whiskies saying: "Bringing together American and European oak sherry seasoned casks to achieve the perfect balance of flavours is incredibly exciting for the Whisky Mastery Team, and we are proud to offer two new expressions to this distinctive range for The Macallan Double Cask fans to explore. Oak influence is the single greatest contributor to the quality, natural colour and distinctive aromas and flavours at the heart of The Macallanís single-malts".

As you would expect for Macallan malts of this age you will need deep pockets if you fancy them as an everyday dram, The Macallan 15 Year Old Double Cask which has been bottled at 43% ABV has a RRP of £100 and the Macallan 18 Year Old Double Cask which is also bottled at 43% ABV is priced at £250, you will find the complete Macallan Double Cask range including the new 15 and 18 Year Old expressions available from specialist online whisky retailers such as The Whisky Exchange, The Whisky Shop and Master of Malt
 

The Macallan Double Cask Gold Review


The Macallan Double Cask Gold ReviewBottled at 40% ABV.

William Morrison's Tasting Notes:

Colour: Deep gold.

Nose: Finely balanced honey, vanilla, orange and raisins.

Taste: Lightly sweet, light creamy vanilla, chocolate, followed by raisins, orange and lemon peel, some light oak spice, cinnamon.

Finish: Bitter sweet, a touch of cinnamon, a mild slowly drying sherried oakiness.

Comment: A nice clean lightly sherried Macallan, formerly the entry level whisky in the Macallan 1824 Series but it has now been rebranded the entry level whisky in the Macallan Double Cask range.

It really is a lovely delicately sherried easy to drink Macallan but if you are looking for a more classic big bold sherried Macallan I suggest exploring the other expressions in the Double Cask range, if you fancy a lighter sherried Macallan then this is the one.

SMW Score 88/100
 

The Macallan 12 Year Old Double Cask Review


The Macallan Double Cask 12 Year Old ReviewBottled at 40% ABV.

William Morrison's Tasting Notes:

Colour: Rich auburn.

Nose: A deliciously enticing nose of honey, creamy vanilla fudge, sweet fondant orange, a little apple in their also and just a touch of fresh oak.

Taste:  Honey and orange citrus laced with a little cinnamon and ginger leads, toffee and raisins follow, a touch of vanilla.

Finish: Long, the sherried fruit fades first leaving the slightly drying and mildly sweet oak spice.

Comment: From the enticing nose I expected it to be sweeter, that's not a criticism, quite the opposite, the taste that followed on the palate was of a well balanced deliciously sherried, mature Macallan that has touches of the old Macallan Fine oak but it is still sure to put a smile on the faces of the fans of sherried Macallan.

SMW Score 90/100
 

The Macallan 15 Year Old Double Cask Review


The Macallan 15 Year Old Double Cask ReviewBottled at 43% ABV.

Producer's Tasting Notes:

Colour: Golden butterscotch.

Nose: Dried fruit, toffee and vanilla with smooth oak and baked apple. Balanced with notes of honey and chocolate.

Taste:  Sweet raisin and sultana builds with hints of vanilla, wood spice and citrus.

Finish: Warm with ginger turning to caramel and citrus, with a lingering and creamy mouth feel.
 

The Macallan 18 Year Old Double Cask Review


The Macallan 18 Year Old Double Cask ReviewBottled at 43% ABV.

Producer's Tasting Notes:

Colour: Amber honey.

Nose: Dried fruit, ginger and toffee. Rich orange with hints of clove and nutmeg.

Taste:  Rich raisin and sultana with notes of caramel, vanilla and ginger, balanced by wood spice and zesty citrus.

Finish: Warm oak spice with ginger, turning to sweet orange.
 

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