Balvenie is Holding a Lottery Tonight!
And the winner gets to purchase one of the rarest whiskies in the world. For $45,000.
1963 was a good while back. Canada didn’t have “O Canada” or the maple leaf flag. Women couldn’t vote in Switzerland. And a 17-year-old David Stewart had recently joined the Balvenie as an apprentice whisky maker. The concept of single malt whisky was still solidly in its infancy: Balvenie stablemate Glenfiddich was just being exported outside Scotland (all the way to England) for the first time.
And without any fanfare the folks at the Balvenie filled cask 4567 with new make spirit (the clear building block that forms the basis of all whisky). And then something amazing happened. They left it. They left it through the rest of the 1960s and 1970s, even though blended whiskies were clamouring for product. David Stewart went from apprentice to Master of Malt, but they still left it through the 1980s and 1990 when Single Malts started the march towards world domination. They left if through the 2000s when Single Malts went from something you drank to something you (if you were smart) invested in.
And this is the end result of that amazing patience: one of the very few 50-year-old bottles that’s ever existed and one, which by all accounts, has survived its five-decade journey impeccably. It’s the only one of the just 131 bottles that came out of that cask that is available in Canada, and it comes in a lovely handmade box from Scottish craftsmen Sam Chinnery. And to make it yours all you have to do is show up at the BCLDB at 39th and Cambie at 7 p.m., sign a waiver and fill out your name for the draw. And be ready to immediately lay out the $45,000 if your name is called. And if that seems daunting, our guess is that anyone whose name wasn’t called might be interested in buying the bottle from you for a modest surcharge.