The Macallan: The Maestro of Whisky Scores a Perfect Partner in Coffee

by Susanah Cheok

In the expert hands of The Macallan, whisky and coffee become a sublime pairing, a delicious dance on the palate.

The Macallan may be renowned and enjoyed for its world-class single-malt whiskies, but this first distiller in Scotland to be legally licensed – and the pride of the highland country – is also known for its inclusiveness in drawing on the vital contributing influences of Spain and North America. The Macallan is known for harnessing the respective natural raw materials, traditional distillation methods and exquisite craftsmanship from these places.

Founded in 1824, The Macallan’s reputation for the extraordinary is characterised by the exceptional oak casks for which it is recognised. Sourced, crafted, toasted and seasoned under the watchful eye of The Macallan Master of Wood, these hand-picked casks are delivered to the demanding specifications of The Macallan Whisky Mastery Team.

All of The Macallan’s whiskies take 100 per cent of their colour from the wood of the casks in which they are matured. This manifests in an interesting array of flavours that are reflective of each different type of wood. To make a cask, each tree is specially selected, felled, sawn, air-dried, and seasoned for 18 months before it is worthy to hold the special liquid that will mature and come to life in it.

New-Life Adventures

Not one to sit on its laurels, this year, The Macallan celebrates another new milestone in whisky innovation: that of unveiling the second edition of The Harmony Collection. Inspired by its deep-rooted connection to nature for nearly 200 years, The Macallan Harmony Collection is a limited annual release series that explores The Macallan’s future packaging journey, with each release unveiling creative and progressive packaging that seeks to upcycle organic by-products, which have ended their usual course. ​It fuses innovative techniques with materials from the natural world at the end of their life, to see them reborn with a renewed purpose. 

Intense Brewing

This year’s rendition embarks on a sensorial journey through the fragrant world of coffee, drawing on the skill and expertise of five coffee experts. As a result of the collaboration, The Macallan Whisky Maker Steven Bremner created The Harmony Collection Inspired by Intense Arabica. In so doing, Bremner immersed himself in the art of coffee, exploring the process from field to cup and uncovering the distinct flavour profiles at each stage. The Harmony Collection Inspired by Intense Arabica’s distinctive tasting notes creates for both whisky and coffee lovers a pleasing experience on the palate.

This unique single malt was inspired by the Ethiopian Arabica bean. Ethiopia is claimed to be the birthplace of coffee as the Arabica bean was the first species of coffee to be cultivated there. Exuding notes of ground coffee, hazelnuts, sweet raisin and vanilla, this unique whisky will transport you into a world of flavour and texture, awakening all of your senses.

This special single malt pairs harmoniously with the best barista-brewed coffee and goes especially well with lightly-salted red butterfly popcorn.

Says Bremner of his latest creation,

In the Inspired by Intense Arabica expression, on the nose there are characteristics like tiramisu, cappuccino, gingerbread, raisins, almonds, sweet oak and vanilla. On the palate, it will turn into espresso, dark chocolate and raisin, with the tiramisu note coming back again, some blackberry, vanilla, Brazil nut and into sweet oak, while the finish imparts a long, dark roast coffee style, but is balanced and sweet.

Innovation and Sustainability at Its Best

Not only is the taste of The Harmony Collection Inspired By Intense Arabica awe-inspiring, each bottle is presented in a beautifully designed box that is the very epitome of ecological inventiveness. The packaging has been expertly crafted to give new life to coffee bean husks, a by-product of coffee, that would otherwise have been discarded. Inspired by the craft and key ingredients, the colour red was selected for the packaging to reflect the rich red colour of the coffee fruit.

You’re Invited to the Perfect Pairing

Now, what’s left to savour, but all the creative expertise poured out by various coffee experts, and Bremner, The Macallan Whisky Maker? The Macallan Harmony Collection Inspired By Intense Arabica Event gamely invites you to coffee time at The Macallan Boutique at Raffles Hotel Singapore for a special celebration.

There, guests will journey through The Macallan’s zero-waste production process, from plant to cup and plant again, and in so doing, discover the process of coffee- and whisky-making. They can also look forward to experiencing a serve ritual, of coffee made from beans of their choice, complemented by delicious popcorn. As a special treat, guests can also purchase a dram of The Macallan Harmony Collection Inspired By Intense Arabica whisky (at $26 for 25ml) to pair with their specially curated coffee.

This amazing blended encounter is the perfect opportunity to enjoy the best of both beverage worlds – world-class whisky, with the finest artisanal coffee.

Images courtesy of The Macallan, artwork by Curatedition. All rights reserved.

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