Brora Iris Sells for £400,000 at Distillers One of One Auction Creating History

The Oldest Ever Brora Makes History at Distillers One of One Charity Auction

Brora Iris, a historic Single Malt Scotch Whisky and one-of-a-kind art piece from the Iconic Brora Distillery has set a new record for the highest price ever paid for a single bottle from the distillery.

Brora Iris, donated by Diageo to the Distillers One Of One Charity Auction, has sold for £400,000 / $483,080 (including buyer’s premium) and breaking the record for the highest price ever paid for a single bottle from Brora distillery.

Sold at Hopetoun House, Edinburgh, in partnership with Sotheby’s, the successful bidder is now the sole owner of Brora Iris. The stunning work of art represents the eye of a Scottish Wildcat, the emblem of Brora Distillery and is the oldest whisky ever to be released from the distillery crafted by distillers at Brora five decades ago.

Two members of the auction team next to the sculpture

The new owner will also be invited to explore the reawakened distillery with five guests and be guided by distillery host Andrew Flatt through an exquisite tasting experience.

The proceeds raised from the sale of Brora Iris at the auction and the 38 other lots, totalling £1.8 million, will be donated to the Distillers’ Charity, principally to the Youth Action Fund, dedicated to transforming the lives of young people in Scotland.

Commenting on the charity auction, Javier Ferrán, Diageo Chairman, said, “We are honoured to have been a part of the second Distillers’ Charity One-of-One auction and that our Brora Iris sold for £400,000, making a significant contribution to the £1.8million total the auction achieved. We look forward to working with the Distillers’ Charity as they put this contribution to good use, supporting communities and young people across Scotland.”

A collaboration by a number of highly skilled artists and craftspeople, the Brora Iris consists of a 1.5-litre decanter representing the Wildcat’s iris, while the stone sculpture has been hewn from the same limestone that was used to build Brora Distillery, by Scotland based sculptor and artist Michelle De Bruin.

The sculpture with a half filled glass

It is crowned by a bronze wildcat figure, which acts as a key to the decanter, cast by one of the UK’s leading sculptors, Jonathan Knight.

The whisky contained within Brora Iris was drawn from a tiny capsule of Brora’s distilling past. The vanishingly rare ghost stock is from the celebrated year of 1972. Brora Iris Master Blender Dr Craig Wilson described it as “a style that has come to define the Brora iconic status” and was crafted only during fleeting periods of the distillery’s past.

Together, the piece creates a remarkable, never-to-be-repeated celebration of the skill, dedication and attention to detail that is the hallmark of Brora.

The iron gates into the Brora Distillery

Founded in 1819, Brora Distillery in Sutherland garnered early acclaim for the quality of its spirit and craftsmanship. When the stills fell silent in 1983, Brora soon earned world renown as one of the lost icons of the whisky world, with historic bottlings eagerly sought out by collectors to set auction records.

In 2021, distilling recommenced at Brora after the distillery was meticulously restored as part of a major investment by Diageo, crafting a new spirit for generations to come. It now welcomes small groups of visitors by appointment only in limited numbers and releases highly sought-out capsules of historic whisky from its ‘ghost’ stock.

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Read more spirits industry news, including other features relating to the Distillers One of One auction, here.

A closeup view of the lid of the Brora caskBrora Iris Sells for £400,000 at Distillers One of One Auction Creating History 2

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