Over 40 farmers exclusively grow Minstrel barley for The Macallan. Low in nitrogen and high in starch it contributes to the characteristically rich, oily character of the ‘new make’ spirit, so important for long wood ageing, especially in Spanish oak casks. The unique size and shape of the stills gives the spirit maximum contact with the copper, helping to concentrate the ‘new make’ spirit which, combined with the finest cut that takes only the best 16% from the distillation to fill to cask, provide those rich, fruity, full-bodied flavours so characteristic of The Macallan.
The Macallan’s oak maturation casks are the single greatest contributor to natural colours and distinctive aromas and flavours of The Macallan. They control the whole journey from forest to cask for the Spanish and American oak sherry seasoned casks, and buy only the best of barrels from premium bourbon producers. A study commissioned exclusively by, and for, The Macallan showed that the casks account for some 60% of the final aromas and flavours, so they invest heavily in sourcing, crafting, seasoning and caring for casks. The Macallan alone accounts for some 65% of fresh sherry seasoned oak casks, the most expensive of all, imported into Scotland for maturing whisky.Show more