The foundation for all Macallan lies with the ‘new make’ spirit; from the quality of the barley, to the soft spring water from boreholes on The Macallan estate, to the final distillation in our curiously small spirit stills – the smallest on Speyside.
Over 40 farmers exclusively grow Minstrel barley for The Macallan. Low in nitrogen and high in starch it contributes to the characteristically rich, oily character of the ‘new make’ spirit, so important for long wood ageing, especially in Spanish oak casks.
The unique size and shape of our stills gives the spirit maximum contact with the copper, helping to concentrate the ‘new make’ spirit which, combined with the finest cut that takes only the best 16% from the distillation to fill to cask, provide those rich, fruity, full-bodied flavours so characteristic of The Macallan.

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