Full collection of Midleton Very Rare whiskey up for grabs - for €110,000

Set will feature 41 bottles from range created in 1984

Whiskey collectors have a rare opportunity to secure one of the most prized collections in Irish whiskey – a full collection of Irish Distillers’ Midleton Very Rare dating back to 1984.

Specialist online whiskey retailer the Single Malt Shop is selling the set for €110,000, including duty and VAT. There are 41 bottles in total, as two versions were released in 2017.

The annual release of Midleton Very Rare Irish whiskey is one of the most eagerly anticipated launches of the year, with collectors, investors and whiskey lovers vying to get their hands on one of a limited number of bottles.

Irish Distillers released the first Midleton Very Rare, created by master distiller Barry Crockett, in 1984. Since then it has been released every year. It is not a single vintage spirit but a blend put together from various casks. Every release is therefore a distinctly different whiskey created by the master distiller. The incumbent is Kevin O’Gorman, who took over from Brian Nation in 2020.


In 1984, Midleton was a relatively new distillery, and Mr Crockett had younger whiskeys to choose from. Today, his successor selects from casks that are up to 33 years old.

The Single Malt Shop, which focuses on premium and rare whiskeys, and whiskeys from across the globe, bought this set a couple of years ago from a collector.

“It is the most prized collection in Irish whiskey, in demand by collectors not only in Ireland but around the world,” said Single Malt Shop managing director Ed Forrest. “It will be interesting to see if the collection sells and how quickly. The €110,000 price tag gives an average bottle price of €2,750.

“While a recent Midleton Very Rare might be on offer for as little as €200, sought-after years such as 1988 can sell for as much as €30,000 a bottle,” he said.

“It is not often that the full range of Midleton Very Rare comes to market. To own the full collection of every release is very special in itself,” Mr Forrest said. “This particular collection is special as the fill levels of each bottle are as good as you can find, and all the certificates, which come with every bottling, are there, so it is as complete a collection as you can find.”

The sale will take place online at 9am on Monday, July 3rd. Details will be available at the Single Malt Shop’s website.

This article was updated on June 22nd to correct the number of bottles included in the sale to 41, not 40.

John Wilson

John Wilson

John Wilson, a contributor to The Irish Times, is a wine critic