The Macallan Director’s Edition was aged in ex-sherry casks and is one of two special editions that were released in late 2011. It’s counterpart, the Master’s Edition, was aged in both ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks. Both of these whiskies were NAS which, if you’re a cynic, basically means they contain whisky that was so young they thought putting an age on the bottle would hurt sales so they left it off. As a practice I have nothing against NAS whisky so long as it tastes like it’s priced, and in this case the value is my issue.
The Macallan Director’s Edition is tasty, but the biggest problem here is that it’s a bit expensive for what you get. Discontinued sometime in 2012 it’s one of those whiskies that if you want to try it you have to get lucky and come across one gathering dust in smaller stores that don’t get picked over quite as often. That, or find it in a bar that still has a bottle. Both situations I’ve come across multiple times here in Los Angeles in the last 3 months so it’s definitely still possible to do if you’re looking for a taste.
The Macallan Director’s Edition Review
This was matured in ex-sherry casks and even though the nose is a bit light on overall character you can definitely tell this is a sherried whisky. Notes of dark fruit and that sherry sweetness sneak out first. Directly behind those are notes of warm caramel, vanilla, cinnamon heavy baking spices and sweet malt. All of these great aromas sit atop a subtle woody undertone.
Second verse same as the first. The dark fruit and sherry notes come lolling out of the glass and are followed by the same caramel, vanilla, baking spices and malt. However, this time they are accompanied by a very pleasant nuttiness that is more pervasive than the wood notes that still lie beneath it all.
BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Decent balance with sweet hanging a bit heavy. Full body and a thick, almost oily, feel create an enjoyable drinking experience.
Caramel gets a bit of a lift here with the dark fruit and vanilla coming up behind it. Some citrus notes join the party and a spiced wood rounds out the party on a nice long finish.
It’s a good whisky and I’ve been lucky enough in the last little while to try it twice and each time I left wanting more, just not at the current price. At the original MSRP of $60 it was an ok value and is the top end of what I’d be willing to pay, but would be happier if it was sitting closer to $50. Though now at the more common $75 – $90 when you come across it, it’s just not worth it in my opinion. The sweet sherry notes paired with malty and nutty notes make for a pleasant drinking experience but it just doesn’t come together in a way that fully demanded it’s initial MSRP let alone it’s current one.
SCORE: 84-88/100 (range given due to having it at a friend’s house not a controlled environment)