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The Macallan 12-year-old Triple Cask – 40% ABV

Overall rating: 5/5

The Macallan is a world-renowned single malt whisky. The distillery was one of Scotland's first legally licensed when it was founded in 1824 by Alexander Reid, a barley farmer and schoolteacher, and combines American, Spanish and Scottish distilling traditions.

Barrels are supplied by a company in northern Spain working with The Macallan to identify the finest oak trees in the forest before felling and coopering them ready for use in whisky maturation. At the whisky's Speyside home, some of the region's smallest stills are used in order to ensure heightened copper contact, maximising the full-bodied and fruity nature of the whisky.

The balance of sherry and bourbon casks is evident, too. Using ex-fill matured oak sherry barrels imparts a spice and fruitiness, well matched by the smooth honey, caramel flavours of bourbon, backed by a punch of rye.

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The Macallan 12-year-old Triple Cask is also redolent of baked spices and vanilla, with white chocolate suggestions coming through. On the palate, it has unmistakable notes of fresh ginger alongside dark berries, caramel, black pepper and rich cocoa, all married for a mature and sophisticated drink. Honey gently shepherds the dram out in a lingering finish.

Makes the perfect whisky gift for...

...a fancy gesture. This is a whisky that oozes class and demands respect, with revered status in the whisky industry. It is mature, disciplined and the Christmas packaging embodies the dram's elegance.

Discover over 400 buyer's guides including the best whiskies to buy as a gift, or more reviews like our favourite rye whiskey in our reviews section.

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This review was last updated in October 2019. If you have any questions or suggestions for future reviews, or spot anything that has changed in price or availability, please get in touch at For information on alcohol guidelines, read our guide to drinking responsibly.

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