From the malted barley from which it is distilled, to the oak casks it is aged and matured in, so much of whisky-making is reliant on the bountiful riches of planet Earth and its natural processes.
In short, without Mother Nature, there would be no whisky.
Hence, it goes without saying that whisky and sustainability should go hand in hand. And it is with that in mind that The Macallan Harmony Collection was created.
Named for the brand’s desire to live in harmony with the natural world, The Macallan Harmony Collection is a new limited annual release series of single malt whiskies that shines a spotlight on The Macallan’s sustainability journey and intrinsic connection to nature.
Renowned worldwide for its extraordinary luxury single malt Scotch whiskies, The Macallan has always valued sustainability as a constant guiding principle for the brand.
The distillery has a wide-reaching sustainability strategy that incorporates a range of elements, from sourcing energy from an adjacent biomass plant and using water from boreholes beside the River Spey for the production process, to partnering with sustainable suppliers and utilising progressive packaging for their whiskies.
Speaking of packaging, the Harmony Collection sees the brand continue its journey towards sustainability with a focus on sustainable packaging.
It explores and applies the art of using organic by-products in its packaging, fusing innovative techniques with materials from the natural world at the end of their life, and imbuing them with a renewed purpose.
The lure of cocoa
The first edition in the series is The Macallan Harmony Collection Rich Cacao, a unique collaboration with renowned pastry chef Jordi Roca of El Celler de Can Roca that strives to bring together the worlds of chocolate and whisky.
Named the ‘World’s Best Pastry Chef’ in 2014 by Restaurant Magazine, Jordi is the youngest of the three renowned Roca brothers; heirs of a long-standing family tradition and legacy that led them to create El Celler de Can Roca in Girona, Spain, which is recognised as one of the best restaurants in the world.
There has always been a harmonious relationship between chocolate and whisky – it is one of the delicacies that always seems to pair perfectly with whisky, particularly the sherry-matured single malts of the Macallan, many of which have decadent hints of chocolates.
While coming up with the Harmony Collection, The Macallan Whisky Maker Polly Logan embarked on a unique journey to Girona, where she visited Jordi’s famed chocolate boutique and hotel, Casa Cacao.
There, she immersed herself in the world of chocolate, exploring the chocolate-making process and uncovering the distinctive flavour profiles with the help of master chocolatier, Damian Allsop.
Back in Scotland, Logan then scoured The Macallan’s extensive stock of maturing whiskies, seeking out casks that displayed rare indulgent chocolate notes.
The result is the Rich Cacao, a sensational whisky crafted from a combination of sherry seasoned European and American oak casks, which pairs in perfect harmony with the richest chocolate for a luxurious sensorial experience.
With a natural colour of toasted cacao beans and an ABV of 44%, this exceptionally rich single malt whisky is characterised by its deep, dark chocolate profile, which pairs perfectly with the richest chocolate for a luxurious sensorial experience.
On the nose, you get a sensual aroma of chocolate fondant, teasing you with sprinkles of honey, oak, zesty lime and ginger. The decadent notes of dark chocolates coat your palate beautifully, with notes of honey sweetness, dates, vanilla and cinnamon spice shining through before ending with a long, lingering finish of rich chocolate once more.
The homage to chocolate doesn’t stop with the whisky though. The Macallan Harmony Collection Rich Cacao is presented in a beautifully crafted presentation box, made in part using special cacao paper that repurposes discarded husks from cacao pods, a by-product in the chocolate-making process, that would have otherwise been sent to landfill or destroyed.
The organic cacao husks are supplied by Italian chocolatier Domori, a highly regarded manufacturer whose Fairtrade policy ensures that its supplying farmers in Venezuela and Colombia are paid a fair margin.
The husks were then incorporated into paper created by Italian paper mill, Favini, which self-produces renewable energy through access to two nearby hydroelectric plants.
The box is 100% recyclable and biodegradable, a testament to The Macallan’s renowned craftsmanship and usage of contemporary packaging techniques aimed at minimising waste.
With the Harmony Collection, The Macallan continues to move forward on its journey to sustainable packaging, further enhancing its reputation as one of the world’s leading distilleries on sustainability.
For more information regarding The Macallan Harmony Collection, please follow this link.