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Charles MacLean creates whisky auction

Whisky writer Charles MacLean has launched an auction of ‘highly collectable’ Scotch bottlings to raise funds for his clean water charity.

Charlie MacLean whisky
L-R: Jamie, Ewan, Charlie and Lachlan MacLean

Last month, MacLean and his three sons established a charity dedicated to clean water projects, which will include whisky-inspired fundraising.

The Maclean Foundation will fund clean water projects through adventures and collaborations with the whisky industry.

His three sons, Ewan, Jamie and Lachlan MacLean, recently completed a cycle and row to every distillery currently selling whisky in Scotland.

Charles MacLean has now rallied the Scotch whisky sector to donate ‘very rare and highly collectable’ bottles for a charity auction.

The auction’s 39 lots include a Port Ellen from 1979, a 35-year-old bottle of Port Ellen, which is part of the Douglas Laing Old & Rare selection, and a 36-year-old Glengoyne from the Russell Family cask.

Also available will be one of only six bottles in existence of Karuizawa Omoiyari, a single malt Japanese whisky and the first bottle of 278 from the Chichibu Distillery’s 1000th cask.

“All the items have interesting stories,” said Charles MacLean. “Some are very rare and highly collectable, although some lots are easily affordable – appealing to consumers as well as collectors and investors. The provenance of every item is flawless.

“The auction is unusual in many respects. Assisted by other trustees, who have or had long involvement with the Scotch whisky industry, we approached a number of friends and colleagues, and they have been hugely generous.

“The funds raised from this outstanding and unique auction will allow the charity to get off the ground and to start having an impact through the provision of clean water.”

The fundraising target for the sale, which is being held for free by Whisky.Auction, is £60,000 (US$75,340).

Isabel Graham-Yool, director of Whisky.Auction said: “This is one of the most remarkable auctions of my career.

“What is so special is that every single one of the 39 lots has particular significance, not only to whisky enthusiasts, but also to the MacLean family and their generous friends who donated such rare and exceptional bottles from their own private collections. We expect there to be a huge amount of interest in this charity auction.”

A collection of 40, primarily first edition, whisky books have also been donated from the personal libraries of 15 whisky writers, including Gavin Smith, Ian Buxton, Alice Lascelles, Nicholas Morgan, Dave Wondrich, and Ingvar Ronde.

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