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The Dalmore: A Masterpiece of Time

Words by Eleanor Hibberd

The greatest Dalmore ever made? You’ll have to wait and see, as master distiller Richard Paterson says, “we haven’t made it yet.” It is this relentless pursuit of excellence that inspired The Dalmore Decades – a brand-new, once-in-a-lifetime collection hand-selected by Paterson from the whisky maker’s vast inventory. Whisky marks memories, and each bottle represents a seminal moment in The Dalmore’s history from the past 50 years. It’s a collection that celebrates visionary creators and stories in every cask – and your opportunity to own an iconic piece of The Dalmore’s storied past.

The Dalmore Decades: No. 5 Collection

Spanning five decades from 1967 to 2000, each decanter in the one-of-a-kind set is topped with a Harrods green stopper and engraved with the exclusive set number, displayed upon a bespoke pedestal to take pride of place in even the most prized collections. The third set of the No. 5 Collection is available only at Harrods – find it in Fine Wines & Spirits on the Lower Ground Floor or email [email protected] to make an enquiry.

Richard Paterson, Master Distiller

"These collections are a true tribute to craftsmanship forged over the decades and offer a fantastic opportunity for collectors in search of a rare, never-to-be-seen-again piece of history."

1967: Expertly Composed Spirit
1967: Expertly Composed Spirit

Impeccably elegant, this 53-year-old single malt was laid down in 1967 – a landmark year in which the stillhouse as it stands today was created. Made to be savoured, a sip of this single malt envelopes the tastebuds in complex but wonderfully intriguing layers of clementine, tangy ground coffee and muscovado. The secret to its tantalising taste? A final maturation in a Mont-Redon Châteauneuf-du-Pape wine barrique. 

1979 whisky
1979: Curating Exquisite Casks

Toast to special occasions with a tumbler of this 40-year-old single malt, matured in a particularly fine Matusalem Oloroso sherry butt before a final maturation in a Graham’s Port Vintage 1952 – one of Port’s rarest vintages. The result? A precious whisky exuberant with sultanas and toasted pistacios, finishing with joyful notes of maple syrup, pineapple and succulent dates.

1980: Unbroken Chain of Visionaries

How to describe the visionary 1980? Delicious, welcoming whisky made in a new-wave, non-traditional way. The 1980s marked Richard Paterson’s arrival at The Dalmore and his tutelage by the last Mackenzie. This 40-year-old single malt takes the traditional maturation of The Dalmore and reverses it: the whisky moves from Bourbon casks into Matusalem sherry butts, then spends more than five years back in first-fill ex-Bourbon casks. Each taste promises a gentle whisper of bitter chocolate, marzipan, and cocoa powder.

1995 whisky
1995: The Creation of an Icon

The 1990s welcomed the creation of The Dalmore’s minimalist bell-shaped bottle, inspired by the voluptuous shape of the stills through which the distillery’s matchless spirit runs. The 1995 is matured in ex-Bourbon casks and finished in spectacular Tintilla de Rota port pipes. Each sip offers an exquisite burst of red berries, glazed nectarines, frangipane and moist pecan pie. 

2000 whisky
2000: Into the New Millennium

Now for the final whisky of The Dalmore Decades – the 2000. Considered the most distinctive, this treasured tipple has spent all 20 years of its life in a Matusalem Oloroso sherry butt in a radical departure from the distillery’s practice. Feel intrigued and delighted by the bold flavours of black maraschino cherry and bitter chocolate followed by a final kiss of liquorice and tarte tatin.

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