Bottle of Japanese whisky sells for record $343,000
Nikkei -- Aug 18
A bottle of rare Japanese whisky sold at a world-record price on Friday, the third record shattered this year for a single malt from the country.

The 50-year-old Yamazaki first edition went for 2.695 million Hong Kong dollars ($343,000), including the buyer's premium, at a Bonhams auction in Hong Kong. The buyer chose to remain anonymous, Bonhams said, but the auction house disclosed that the winner -- who placed the bid by phone -- was from Asia.

The previous record for a bottle of Japanese whisky was set in May, when an Expression of Karuizawa 1960 52-year-old The Dragon fetched HK$2.45 million at Bonhams in Hong Kong. In January, a Yamazaki single malt aged 50 years sold for HK$2.337 million at a Sotheby's auction, also in Hong Kong.

"The Yamazaki 50-year-old is a very rare and special whisky, and I am expecting a lot of interest from collectors," Daniel Lam, Bonhams' head of fine wine and whisky in Hong Kong, had said in a statement prior to Friday's auction.

[Image: The auctioneer brings down the hammer at the auction of a bottle of Yamazaki 50 whisky at Bonhams in Hong Kong. (Photo by Dean Napolitano)] The auctioneer brings down the hammer for the 50-year-old Yamazaki first edition. (Photo by Dean Napolitano)

When the Yamazaki first edition was initially released in 2005 with 50 bottles, it sold for 1 million yen, or about $9,000 at the current exchange rate, Christopher Pong, Bonhams' specialist for wine and whisky, said after the auction hammer came down on the winning bid.

News source: Nikkei
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