The oldest bottle of whiskey in the world just sold for a staggering $137,500. The legendary bottle of Old Ingledew bourbon went under the hammer at an auction overseen by Skinner Auctioneers. Initially, the bottle of Old Ingledew was expected to sell for $20,000 to $40,000, but ended up shattering expectations.
Long thought to date back to 1850, a recent test of this iconic bottle of Old Ingledew revealed that the whiskey was actually bottled between 1763 and 1803. The laboratory test was conducted by the University of Georgia and University of Glasgow, where the liquid was taken from the bottle and carbon tested and revealed an 81.1 percent likelihood that the that the bourbon was between 258 and 218 years old.
Making things even more interesting, the oldest bottle of whiskey in the world also has an intriguing backstory. It was once owned by the founder of JPMorgan Chase & Co., John Pierpoint Morgan, who obtained the whiskey during a business trip to Georgia, according to Barron’s. Then, in the 1940s, his son Jack gifted the bottle to future US Supreme Court justice and South Carolina governor James Byrnes.
While the $137,000 selling price for the world’s oldest bottle of whiskey is certainly staggering, it isn’t anywhere near the most expensive bottle of whiskey in the world. That honor belongs to a bottle of Macallan Fine and Rare 60-Year-Old 1926, which was sold for $1.9 million in 2019. The Macallan 1926 from cask number 263 is widely known as the Holy Grail of Whisky and bottles from the barrel have reguularly gone for over $1 million.
In April, Skinner Auctioneers first announced the coming auction of the bottle of Old Ingledew. Collectors have been clamoring for ultra rare whiskies like never before. In April in Hong Kong, a set of 5 Bowmore Black scotch bottles distilled in 1964 collected $563,000.