By Olivia Cuccaro
When it comes to whisky, it’s no longer enough to simply release a bottle of great age. What turns heads these days is brands who team up with unexpected partners for expressions that pique interests outside of spirits alone. For Scottish distillery The Macallan, that key partner is master perfumist Roja Dove of the eponymous fragrance brand, who lent his olfactory expertise to the creation of the new Edition No 3 single malt whisky.
As The Macallan’s oak casks are at the center of the whisky making process, Dove was tapped to describe the unique aromas in particular oak casks to Bob Dalgarno, the brand’s master whisky maker. Dalgarno then used Dove’s articulation of scents to choose the dominant notes that shaped the character of The Macallan Edition No 3, which Dove then nosed to complete the collaboration. The resulting whisky was crafted from a combination of European and American oak casks offering a sweet and fruity character with notes of citrus, vanilla, florals and fresh-cut oak.
On the parallels between perfume and whisky, Charlie Whitfield, manager of brand education and prestige whiskies, tells me, “The nose is the most powerful sensory organ in the human body, and the power of aroma is unquestionable in both whisky and perfume. From defining life experiences to the recall of special memories, the sense of smell is as personal as a fingerprint, and has the ability to evoke the most precious, rewarding and distinctive experiences. The Macallan always endeavors to produce exceptional single malt whiskies, but this collaboration has provided inspiration to create a particular style of whisky by focusing on the aromas derived from distinctive oak casks. The result is a multi-sensory experience of indulgent aromas and flavors.”
The Macallan Edition No 3 is limited to approximately 250,000 bottles at $95 each. For more information, please visit themacallan.com.