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WMI - Whisky Magazine Index

WMI 1,573.7 -0.3%

August 2015

Singapore at 50

Spink held their annual wine and spirit sale in Singapore earlier this year on August 15th, rather than during the Formula One weekend. The evening sale was held in the Heliconia Ballroom of the Sands Expo and Convention Centre, adjacent to the spectacular Marina Bay Sands Hotel. As Singapore proudly celebrated its 50th anniversary, connoisseurs at the Spink’s sale were spoilt for choice.

The first bottle of Scotch whisky sold was a Tomintoul 1966 aged 44 years bottled in 2010 which fetched SG$1,700 (£770). Closed distilleries performed well; Port Ellen 1978 Douglas Laing Platinum Selection 30 Years Old 54.2% made SG$1,100 (£500), Littlemill 1985 28 Years Old 49% from Jack Wiebers Whisky World SG$550 (£250), Brora 1982 Rare Malts Selection 20 Years Old 58.1% SG$1,050 (£475), and Rosebank 1981 25 Years Old 61.4% from the Diageo Special Releases in 2007 SG$1,050 (£475). The Macallan saw some attractive prices, though only 7 of the 13 lots sold (The Macallan M failed to sell); The Macallan Travel Series (4x50cl replicas of the 20s, 30s, 40s, and 50s) made SG$1,500 (£680), and The Macallan 1965 bottled in 1984 SG$2,800 (£1,265).

The Japanese whisky section was by far the largest of the sale. The Yamazaki 1997 Owner’s Cask made a market value of SG$1,050 (£475), and Yamazaki 25 Years old sold for SG$2,900 (£1,310). From Nikka, the Yoichi 1988 single cask 20 Years Old earned a worthy SG$2,700 (£1,220) whilst the Nikka Taketsuru Aged 25 Years made SG$1,050 (£475) though the Taketsuru Aged 35 Years Old filed to find a buyer. A beautiful array of Hibiki decanters went under the hammer; Hibiki 21 Years Old made SG$1,500 (£680), the Tiger illustration ceramic matching the price of the Mount Fiji bottling.

These were only the appetisers ahead of the main course, which was Karuizawa. Nineteen bottles sold in all, though uncommonly, a couple failed to meet their reserves. Given the differences in currency and premiums, prices in Singapore were broadly as strong as Europe.

The plain labels of the Karuizawa Vintage series sold as follows; Karuizawa Vintage 1977 Aged 32 years Cask #6994 62.7% SG$5,100 (£2,300), Karuizawa Vintage 1980 Aged 31 years Cask #6568 56.4% SG$3550 (£1,600), Karuizawa Vintage 1981 Aged 30 years Cask #2077 56.4% SG$3,350 (£1,515), Karuizawa Vintage 1982 Aged 29 Years Cask #2279 58.1% SG$3,300 (£1,495), Karuizawa Vintage 1983 Aged 28 Years Cask #7524 57.4% SG$3,350 (£1,515) and Karuizawa Vintage 1984 Aged 27 Years Cask #2963 57.2% SG$3,200 (£1,450).

The top bottle was the Karuizawa 1976 Geisha bottling Aged 34 Years Cask #7818 63.6% SG$6,850 (£3,100) though the Geisha series proved to be popular; Karuizawa 1983 Geisha bottling Aged 29 years Cask #2656 57.6% SG$3,900 (£1,765), Karuizawa 1984 Geisha bottling Aged 28 years Cask #3186 58% SG$5,300 (£2,400), Karuizawa 1983 Geisha bottling Aged 29 Years Cask #2233 59.4% SG$4,400 (£1,990) and Karuizawa 1981 Geisha bottling Aged 31 years Cask #2100 60.4% SG$4,750 (£2,150).

The Whisky Exchange, London bottling of Karuizawa 1981 Aged 30 years Cask #6256 57.5% made SG$3,900 (£1,765) and the Karuizawa Noh Multivintage 1981- 1984 achieved SG$3,300 (£1,495). Finally, there were two ferocious-looking Karuizawa Samurai bottlings; Karuizawa 1985 Samurai Label 6 Aged 30 years Cask#4201 57.4% SG$6,000 (£2,715) and Karuizawa 1984 Samurai Aged 30 years Cask #7857 58% SG$4,750 (£2,150).

Karuizawa is still the hottest ticket in town. With Bonhams Hong Kong sale in August similarly tilted towards Japanese whisky treasures, we can expect to further strong movement of Japanese whisky brands up the WMI chart in the next issue of Whisky Magazine.

Top 25 Chart

Price Chg
1 Macallan -3.1%
2 Karuizawa +0.2%
3 Van Winkle -6.1%
4 Ardbeg -4.1%
5 Bowmore -1.0%
6 Glenfiddich -15.6%
7 Hanyu -0.9%
8 Port Ellen +0.6%
9 Springbank -15.3%
10 Glenlivet -2.1%
11 Highland Park -11.8%
12 Glenmorangie +0.0%
13 Yamazaki -8.9%
14 Bruichladdich -6.6%
15 Dalmore +9.1%
16 Glenfarclas +0.9%
17 Balvenie -16.2%
18 Caol Ila +9.1%
19 Lagavulin +8.6%
20 Laphroaig -13.4%
21 Ah Hirsch -0.6%
22 Arran +7.4%
23 Glen Grant -1.0%
24 Hibiki -10.9%
25 Rosebank -3.8%

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