(it better be) Good to the last drop

Some time ago I wrote about the joys of tasting a rare Scotch whisky from The Glenlivet Collection that sells for $2,000 a bottle. Little did I know that was mere pocket change.

Johnnie Walker is topping that pricing level with a blend that goes for $24,150 a bottle -- or, as some experts have figured it out, $862 a sip.

Diageo, the British drinks conglomerate that owns Johnnie Walker, came up with the idea of mixing a variety of Scotland's best whiskies, all over 30 years old and some as old as 70, to obtain its 1805 anniversary pack. Only 200 bottles have been made, and released just in time for high-rollers' Christmas shopping.

The aptly-surnamed Jim Beveridge, Diageo’s Master of Blending, created the offering. The first bottle was sold at a spirited (no pun intended) auction during a high-tech promotional blowout (see photo) in Shanghai, where Diageo pulled out all the stops to try cashing in on a large market of young Chinese partygoers with plenty of disposable income.

Meanwhile, in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, a liquor merchant has become the first to obtain a $100,000 barrel of Scotch from Glenfiddich. Willow Park Wines & Spirits purchased the 1974 vintage cask that will yield 220 bottles at about $600 a bottle.

Store purchaser David Michiels said 220 bottles will come from the cask. Peter Gordon, a great-great-grandson of the Glenfiddich founder, plans to visit Calgary to celebrate the buy from his 139-year-old distillery in Dufftown, Scotland.

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