Watches & Whisky: Macallan 18 + Laurent Ferrier


Balance: The Macallan is the third largest selling single malt scotch in the world and Macallan’s Scotch whisky is, primarily, matured in oak seasoned with sherry brought to the distillery from Jerez, Spain. The sherry cask finish scotch from Macallan is what could be considered their core age-statement range. That said, the 18-year-old expression from this range is perhaps one of their more regularly sought-after drops and is one of the few sherry cask finish expression, from Macallan, that is defined by the year it was distilled. Macallan scotch finished in sherry oak is known to be deliciously smooth single malt, which is rich and well-rounded but perhaps a little too is easy to drink and of course will not disappoint.

On the nose: you’ll experience an initial waft of sherry, dried mixed fruits (raisins) and vanilla. This is followed by notes of ripe raspberries, strawberries and toffee. You’ll get a bouquet of butterscotch and the spiciness of cinnamon and cloves, followed by suggestions of candy apple. Rounding off the nose is a a touch of ginger and a hint of wood smoke. On the palate: it has a lovely milky texture and those sweet sherry notes are present, followed by vanilla, marzipan and ginger stem undertones. Those spices nosed start to emerge, alongside some star anise. Going back for more, notes of maraschino cherries start to appear, followed by those butterscotch notes, toffee, with a hint of oranges, dried figs, apricots and walnuts. The finish: is long, sweet, with lingering mixed dried fruits, ginger and smoke.

The verdict: As you know, The Macallan as a brand are so well revered around the world and this 18-year-old expression from the distillery based in Craigellachie, Speyside – is just a drop of liquid gold. This is a Scotch that on the nose is rather rich and complex but on the palate is much mellower than one would’ve thought. It is a delicately balanced scotch but balanced to perfection – from nose to finish it is truly stunning. With an ABV of 43%, this is probably not a Scotch that I would add any water to but if you feel the need then only add in small quantities until it just right for you.

Info: ABV 43% in a 70cl bottle

Perfection: Each Laurent Ferrier watch is masterpiece and from the outside look simple, yet every little detail has been well thought-out and beautifully sculpted. Their watches remind me of a quote that is very apt when thinking about Laurent Ferrier: “Perfection is achieved not when there is nothing left to add but when there is nothing left to take away.” Laurent Ferrier’s ethos is to create classical timepieces with modern knowhow and technology.

The Galet Micro Rotor was introduced in 2011 a few years after the highly acclaimed Galet Classic Tourbillon Double Spiral, which won the Men’s watch prize at GPHG in 2010. The Galet Classic is all about high-end watchmaking, whereas the Micro Rotor was created to address a need for an elegant dress watch, with the same level of detail, but at a relatively more accessible price point. The elegantly sculpted pebble-shape case is a sight to behold and somewhat holds a slight optical illusion. The case measures a modern 40mm but not only appears smaller but feels small on the wrist too.

At the heart of the Galet Micro Rotor is the pièce de résistance; the self-winding LF 229.01, which makes use of a the signature double direct-impulse escapement, that uses less power and maintains amplitude better through the escape lever being locked between two escape wheels, smoothly transferring power. The timekeeping on the Micro Rotor is phenomenal, chronometer certified by the Besançon Observatory, performing far better than COSC watches, with a power reserve of 72 hours. The Galet Micro Rotor truly is a tour de force.