Review: The Macallan Enigma

The Macallan Enigma: a wonderfully intense and complex sherry-bomb single malt that comes with a hefty price tag.

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The Macallan Enigma
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The brand new Macallan Quest Collection replaced the distillery's older 1824 Collection, which has been a mainstay in Global Travel Retail for the past 10 years. The new Collection consists of four no age statement single malt expressions (QuestLumina, Terra and Enigma) and has been available since January 2018 and is exclusive to travel retail (or in certain online whisky stores).

At the high end of Macallan's Quest Collection sits the Enigma with an average price of around $260. It's matured exclusively in first-fill European oak sherry-seasoned casks from one cooperage in Jerez de la Frontera, Spain. This expression is chill filtered and bottled at 44.9% ABV and contains no artificial colouring.

On the nose: as you'd expect there's a strong sherry influence. Dried fruits (prunes, raisins, figs, dates), oak, vanilla, orchid fruits, ginger, cinnamon and hints of dark chocolate. A very intense and complex nose. 

On the palate: thick with very similar notes to the nose. Dried fruits (dried apricots and raisins), vanilla, ginger, strong notes of oak, honey, cinnamon and vanilla.

Finish: Very long with sweet milk chocolate and oak.

Overall: as you can imagine, the sherry casks have imparted a lot of rich sherry notes to the Enigma and have created a delicious single malt that offers a smooth drinking experience for all whisky lovers. The oak is strong, but the sherry elements still manage to shine, as should be in any proper Macallan expression. Is $260 too much for a no age statement single malt? We believe it is but it's becoming the norm these days.

The Macallan Enigma bottle
Country
Distillery
Bottle size

70cl

Average price
$260
Age
No Age Statement Spirit
ABV

44.9%

Filteration
Spirit coloring
Natural Colour
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