Massachusetts Beverage Business



Well, it sounds like a joke but no one at the Liquor Control Board in Ontario is laughing after a man walked out of the store with a bottle of scotch worth $26,OOO. Dressed in a Burberry shirt, cap and brown trench coat, the man unassumingly paid for his bottle of wine at a Queens Quay liquor store on Saturday, April 7. Only later was he suspected of stealing a bottle of scotch. And it wasn’t just any bottle of scotch. It was a 5O-year-old Glenfiddich Single Malt, one of only 15 in Ontario and 5O worldwide. It was also the single most expensive item ever stolen from a Liquor Control Board of Ontario store, said Heather MacGregor, media relations co-coordinator for the LCBO. “This bottle was displayed in a locked cabinet,” she said, adding that there were other high-priced items stored at that location as well, including seven bottles of Rémy Martin Louis XIII Cognac, valued at $28OO each, and an $8OO bottle of Château Margaux vintage wine. “There are quite a few very exclusive and rare products that are offered at that store.”

According to Andrew Ferguson, co-manager and whisky expert at the Calgary-based Kensington Wine Market, the 7OOml bottle fetched such a high price because of its rarity. Glenfiddich, one of the best-known and most-decorated scotch distilleries in the world, produces very few bottles in that age range. Ferguson explained that there is a growing market for rare whisky in places like Taiwan, China and Russia, and a growing black market for vintage alcohol worldwide.

With Glenfiddich only releasing 5O bottles of the 5O-year-old single-malt each year for 1O years, Ferguson said he hopes the bottle doesn’t go to waste. “Wherever that bottle ends up, I just hope it ends up getting opened and enjoyed by someone.”

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