It is not every day you get to try a whisky that is going to cost a punter £100,000, plus VAT. Today I got to try the Diamond Jubliee by John Walker & Sons, which has been produced by Diageo for the 60th anniversary of the Queen ascending the throne.
Now it is important to bear in mind that while this Walker blend has whiskies distilled from 1952, it isn't just the whisky that is worth £100K. The decanter is Baccarat on a crystal base. The stopper is Britannia silver, selected for its purity and there are half-carat diamonds. The barrels for marrying the blend were made from oak from the Sandrigham estate. They had been lightly toasted and then seasoned with Pedro Ximenez sherry followed by grain whisky. The handsome cabinets are hand made from Sandringham oak and pine from the Queen's Balmoral estate.
One could go on - Laura West from Skye hand binding the book and calligrapher Sally Mangum doing the writing.
Altogether it is an awesome project. There are only 60 editions, plus one for the Queen herself. Several have already been sold. The Queen Elizabeth Scholarship Trust (QEST), the charitable arm of the Royal Warrant Holders' Association (Walker has a royal warant from the Queen), is guaranteed to get a minimum donation of £1 million from the sales.
The whisky? Delicate, light gold with a watery rim. Light, quite fruity with spicy notes. There is an overriding sweetness and a smokiness on the finish.
Probably the first and last time I get to taste this whisky. An amazing project. The attention to detail, the craftsmanship, the quality of the materials.