The Macallan has unveiled The Harmony Collection Fine Cacao, a follow up to last year’s Rich Cacao. The new offerings is a global travel retail exclusive and is the first in a limited-release series of single malt whiskies that will see the brand progress its journey towards sustainable packaging.
The Macallan Whisky Maker Polly Logan traveled to Girona, Spain to learn about Spanish chocolate-making techniques and chocolate flavor profiles to create the Fine Cacao edition. She partnered with acclaimed Spanish Pastry Chef Jordi Roca, who is the youngest of the Roca brothers of famed patisserie El Celler de Can Roca, a long-standing partner of The Macallan. Logan visited Jordi’s Casa Cacao in Girona and learned about chocolate craftsmanship from Master Chocolatier Damian Allsop.
Logan created The Macallan Harmony Collection Fine Cacao by selecting a combination of European and American oak casks that offer rare chocolate notes. The Scotch has a medium chocolate profile created to pair perfectly with chocolate.
The liquid is encased in a fully recyclable and biodegradable presentation box made with natural by-products of chocolate production. The box is made with discarded husks from cacao pods, minimizing waste and extending the life-cycle of cacao.
Edrington Global Travel Retail Regional Managing Director Jeremy Speirs said: “Travel retail-exclusives have been a bedrock of our success in the channel – allowing us to showcase our creativity, innovation and heritage to global shoppers in new and exciting formats.
“With the launch of The Harmony Collection Fine Cacao, we shine a light on our standout collaboration with the Roca Brothers while also demonstrating our sustainability credentials and the steps we are taking to help consumers make more environmentally friendly choices in travel retail.”
Bottled at 40% ABV, the whisky has the color of toasted cacao beans. On the nose, it offers chocolate, butter toffee, oak and pear aromas. The palate exudes chocolate covered raisins, ginger, fig, and marzipan with a medium, chocolate finish.
“The Macallan Harmony Collection Fine Cacao is a delightful expression which brings together the worlds of whisky and chocolate,” commented Logan. “Working in collaboration with Jordi Roca, acknowledged as one of the best and most creative pastry chefs in the world, and with exceptional chocolatier Damian Allsop, I went on a journey of discovery, learning of the craftsmanship, passion and creativity which goes into making chocolate.
“I uncovered a great synergy between the whisky and chocolate-making processes. Both take time and exceptional attention to detail, with even the slightest changes encouraging different aromas and flavours to emerge.
“For this travel retail expression, I set out looking for a specific chocolate note in The Macallan’s traditional sherry seasoned European oak casks and combined this with a vanilla note imparted by sherry seasoned American oak casks to sweeten it slightly,” Logan added.
“With a natural colour of toasted cacao beans, this exquisite single malt has a unique and elegant medium chocolate profile with raisin and toffee notes and offers a wonderful whisky and chocolate pairing experience.”
Roca commented, “Our collaboration with The Macallan allows us to challenge our own creativity, and in this project, we have been allowed to play with cacao, which is one of my passions. Being able to inspire a whisky and to create a unique tasting experience has been wonderful.”
The limited-edition collection comes in sustainable packaging made from recycled cacao husks. The launch, meanwhile, is supported by a sustainable retail experience. A first for the brand, the experience minimizes waste, carbon emission, and the use of non-renewable sources.
The retail concept uses circular design principles that extend the product life cycle. The concept’s displays are made with 95% sustainable materials. Of the displays, 80% are recyclabl,e and 100% can be dismantled and reused for future activations.
The Harmony Collection Fine Cacao will be available in The Macallan boutiques in selected international airports, starting with Lotte Duty Free at Singapore Changi Airport from this month. A global roll-out will follow in other key travel retail hubs from June. It is priced at $160.
For more information, head over to The Macallan’s official website.
Last month, The Macallan launched Distil Your World New York, a limited-edition single malt whisky that captures the essence of The City That Never Sleeps where they also partnered with the Roca brothers.
In February, the distillery unveiled the world’s oldest single malt, The Reach.