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Dalmore Whiskey Bottle Review & Price Guide (2022 Updated)

Last Updated on October 19, 2022 by Lydia Martin

Dalmore Distillery is a well-recognized producer of Scotch whiskies with record-breaking high auction prices. Most people find it intriguing to bid a hundred thousand to a million dollars for a single whisky bottle. But what makes it special? 

Here is our quick Dalmore whisky review to further understand this award-winning whisky brand. 

Everything About Dalmore Whisky

Dalmore Whisky

A dram of Dalmore’s Single Malt Scotch whisky has a nuanced complexity imparted by the oak casks used during the aging, finishing, and blending processes. The Dalmore house style involves half of this whisky initially matured using American white oak ex-bourbon barrels, while the other half rested in Matusalem oloroso sherry casks.

Behind the Dalmore range of whiskies is the Master Distiller Richard Paterson. Each bottle features the image of a Royal Stag, an emblem of the Mackenzie family.

Did You Know?

Did You Know?

Brief History

Alexander Matheson established the Dalmore Distillery in 1839 at the banks of Cromarty Firth, Scotland. He only rented out the distillery to various whisky makers and later sold it to the Mackenzie brothers in 1867 [1].

The brothers knew little about the business, but they incorporated the whisky’s iconic Royal Stag emblem. It is a symbol granted to the head of clan Mackenzie by King Alexander III in 1263.

How It’s Made

Oak Barrel

Dalmore Single Malts go through an aging process supervised by Master Distiller Richard Paterson using ex-bourbon casks and Matusalem oloroso sherry casks. 

The time spent in these casks imparts chocolate and orange notes to the whiskies. Some whiskies rested in additional casks such as Pinot Noir, Merlot, Zinfandel, Syrah, and Cabernet Sauvignon, resulting in more complex flavors.

Ingredients & Alcohol Content

These Single Malt expressions used 100% malted barley and sourced water from the river Averon that runs through the distillery’s location.

The alcohol content of Dalmore’s whiskies range from 40% ABV to 46.5% ABV for their Principal Collection bottles. However, their limited-edition Dalmore Constellation Collection 1991 is cask strength at 56.6% ABV.

Who Owns It

Emperador Inc.

Emperador, Inc., a Philippines-based alcoholic drinks producer, bought the Dalmore Distillery in 2014 for approximately $726 million. The original owner, Alexander Matheson, sold the distillery to the descendants of clan Mackenzie before it eventually got acquired by White & Mackay. 

The ownership of White & Mackay has gone through several companies, including Diageo and United Spirits Ltd, before ending with its current owner. 

Price & Value

For around $60, the Dalmore 12-Year-Old Single Malt Scotch whisky is one of the cheapest of the Dalmore family. However, the special release of the Dalmore Decades Collection was sold at an auction for approximately $1,124,000, featuring six bottles chosen from different decades. 

According to Sotheby’s, this price point is the most expensive whisky value for that year [2]

Tasting Notes

Palate

A glass of Dalmore Whisky

A dram of Dalmore Single Malt has a thick mouthfeel loaded with orange peel, milk chocolate notes, and sherry sweetness.

Nose

It may have a varying aroma, but some expressions have a nose of red apples, triple sec, orange zest, dried fruits, and spice.

Color & Viscosity

Whiskey glass with Dalmore Whisky on table

The liquor has deep amber and rich caramel coloring imparted by the maturing process and cask.

Finish 

The dram of whisky ends in a smooth and enjoyable taste with no smokiness. 

Common Dalmore Whisky Prices

Common Dalmore Whisky Prices

Type Size Alcohol By Volume Average Price
The Dalmore 21 750ml 43.8% Around $800
King Alexander III 750ml 40% Around $300
The Dalmore 15 750ml 40% Around $130
The Dalmore 12 750ml 40% Around $65
The Dalmore 25 750ml 42% Around $1500
Port Wood Reserve 750ml 46.5% Around $100
The Dalmore 18 750ml 43% Around $300
Sherry Cask Select 750ml 43% Around $80
The Dalmore 1951 700ml  42.6% Around $187,400
The Dalmore 1967 700ml 42.5% Around $187,400
The Dalmore 1979 700ml 41.5% Around $187,400
The Dalmore 1980 700ml 40.8% Around $187,400
The Dalmore 1995 700ml 42.5% Around $187,400
The Dalmore 2000 700ml 47% Around $187,400

Compared to Other Whiskeys

Compared to Other Whiskeys

Wild Turkey

The cheapest bottle of Wild Turkey ranges from $20 to $25, which is lower than Dalmore 12-Year-Old. Both the nose and palate have engaging light characters that are enjoyable to drink straight or on cocktails. This bourbon whiskey has sweet corn, vanilla, peppermint spice, and cinnamon notes with light alcohol in the aftertaste.

Elijah Craig

Elijah Craig

Elijah Craig is another cheaper bourbon whiskey brand available for around $28. Its nose is heavy on black pepper and herbal notes, while the palate has a surprisingly sweet flavor. It is present with all the typical subtle tastes of a bourbon whiskey, such as vanilla, peanut brittle, and spice hints.

George Dickel

This brand is one of the major producers of Tennessee whiskey in the United States. At a suggested price point of around $30, its bottle is still cheaper than Dalmore 12-Year-Old. 

Its nose has a welcoming aroma of citrus fruits, butterscotch, and oak, while the palate is sweet with light vanilla. The sip ends with a little heat, cinnamon, oak, and leather flavors.

Read: Black & White Scotch Whisky Review

Popular Dalmore Whisky Cocktails

Popular Dalmore Whisky Cocktails

The Dalmore Old Fashioned

Prep Time: 3 minutes

Total Time: 3 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 50 ml whisky
  • 10 ml simple syrup
  • Two dashes of Angostura bitters
  • Orange wheel

Instructions:

Pour the whisky and simple syrup into a cocktail glass. Add a large ice cube, then mix in the bitters. Stir the blend for at least two minutes and garnish with an orange wheel. Serve and enjoy. 

Serving: 1

The Dalmore Mackenzie Highball

The Dalmore Mackenzie Highball on desk

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Total Time: 5 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 50 ml whisky 
  • 25 ml Raspberry syrup
  • 25 ml Tawny Port
  • Soda water
  • Orange wheel

Instructions:

Start by putting ice into a highball glass. Add the whisky, raspberry syrup, and tawny port. Stir the blend, then top it off with soda water. Garnish the drink with an orange wheel. Serve.

Serving: 1

FAQs

Why is Dalmore whisky expensive?

The casks used during the maturation process and limited supply of the Dalmore range make it more expensive compared to other whisky brands. The two bottles of Dalmore 62, which sold for more than $300,000 per piece, were the most expensive expression ever sold at auction for the company. 

What whiskey is similar to Dalmore?

Aberfeldy and Glendronach are similar to Dalmore because these single malt whiskies come from the Highland region in Scotland. On the other hand, the Macallan and Balvenie used oak sherry casks, like Dalmore, in their making process. 

Final Thoughts

The Dalmore’s whiskies are premium-quality alcoholic drinks from a distillery in Scotland. It was frequently featured in different news headlines for being one of the most expensive whisky brands to be bought at an auction. The limited supply and sophisticated production process make this good whisky expensive. 

You can enjoy a dram of Dalmore whisky straight, on the rocks, or as a mixer. The strong flavors of the Cigar Malt expression also pair well with a good cigar.

References:

  1. https://www.forbes.com/sites/joemicallef/2021/11/06/the-dalmore-decades-collection-how-to-create-complexity-in-a-whisky/
  2. https://www.rollingstone.com/product-recommendations/lifestyle/dalmore-decades-collection-whiskey-buy-online-auction-1248595/

2 thoughts on “Dalmore Whiskey Bottle Review & Price Guide (2022 Updated)”

  1. Hello Lydia, seeing that you write about the elixir of life a lot, just note the following spelling:

    Whisky (Scotch only)
    Whiskey (all the rest)

    I know that some non-Scotch rascals are not sticking to the rule.

    Reply

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