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Bottle of whisky sells for $200,000

on 25/09/11 at 6:46 am


SINGAPORE: A Chinese businessman has paid what is believed to be a record amount for a bottle of whisky at a duty-free shop at Changi Airport two weeks ago.

He put down a deposit for a 62-year-old bottle of Dalmore single malt – one of only 12 ever produced.

The bottle is worth S$250,000 (US$200,000). That works out to be about just under US$12,000 per nip or per serving.

According to an airport spokesperson, he made a deposit of S$100,000 by bank transfer.

The rare purchase at Changi Airport is testament to the booming demand in Asia for Scotland’s treasured national drink.

The Scotch Whisky Association said exports to the region in the first half of 2011 grew 33 per cent to US$665 million. In Singapore alone, exports grew 64 per cent to around US$234 million.

The country ranked third among the world’s biggest export markets by value, just behind the US and France.

Andrew Skene, Managing Director of the Spirit of Scotland, said: “It’s quite an incredible figure… These figures are based on the value that comes into the country, but not always on what’s consumed in Singapore.”

Nevertheless, whisky shipped through Singapore is distributed to increasingly knowledgeable consumers throughout Asia.

Mr Skene said: “People are now beginning to understand the difference between blended whisky, single malt, the difference in the years, also single casks.”

And despite the growing reputation of whiskies such as those crafted in Japan, Scotch remains the tipple of choice.

Mike Soldner, B28 Bar Owner and Whisky Fund Manager, said: “The variants in flavour, the look and feel is a big selling point. And the second is the tradition that backs it up, which just gives it more credibility.”

That is one reason why many are looking to cash in on booming Scotch exports.

Investors can buy by barrels at the point of first-fill, directly from distilleries in Scotland. Although, a safer bet may be to buy mature whiskies, ready for bottling.

Mr Soldner said: “The first fill single barrel is very speculative. While you may be able to sell it or get it dumped into a blend, the likelihood of your barrel being some stellar release that gets great reviews and everyone is scrambling to buy bottles of is really a one-in-a-million chance.”

But, the chance of someone snapping up a US$200 000 bottle at Changi Airport is also remote. Betting on whisky, is not for the faint hearted.

SOURCE via ChannelNewsAsia

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