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McCartney Macallan, anyone?

FASHION meets nature meets whisky in a collaboration between The Macallan and the McCartney sisters, Mary and Stella (a photographer and a fashion designer; and ex-Beatle Paul McCartney’s daughters).

The whisky the sisters worked on is called Amber Meadow, under The Macallan’s Harmony Collection. The Harmony Collection is one of the 1824 distillery’s shows of support for sustainability. The McCartney sisters’ whisky is packaged and labeled in paper made from meadow cuttings. Previous iterations from the Harmony Collection included packaging made with discarded cacao pods (in a partnership with pioneering Spanish chef Jordi Roca), while another was made with coffee silverskins (in a partnership with coffee industry leaders).

The whisky was launched on March 14 at The Podium with an installation: The Podium Hall was turned into a glen, with a panoramic photograph shot by Mary McCartney serving as a backdrop. During the tasting, real moss was on the tables. The sisters’ touches were seen on the whisky: Mary’s photographs of The Macallan Estate are depicted on the box, while in the installation, neon lights showed one of Stella McCartney’s favorite phrases: “No smile, no service.” The installation lasted until March 16.

The Macallan Ambassador Hans Eckstein led guests through the tasting, instructing us to sniff into the tulip glasses to detect notes of citrus, vanilla, and coconut. It had the color of actual prehistoric amber and had a bit of a scent of candied lemons combined with grain (like rice, or wheat, or barley). It had a fresh, light taste, and a light peppery heat; though Mr. Eckstein also told us to look for a note of green tea. “Overall, it’s a freshness that reminds you of meadows,” said Mr. Eckstein. “You have more floral characteristics.”

Online liquor stores list it in the P20,000 to P30,000 range, but it was offered at a special price during the installation for about P16,000.

According to Mr. Eckstein, the sisters’ touches on the whisky itself “stems from their memories of spending their childhood in Scotland.” They’ve also collaborated with The Macallan on a collection of barware called “Together,” including glasses and ice tongs, among others.

The McCartney family has long been known for its support for cruelty-free causes: Paul McCartney has been a vegetarian since about the 1970s, along with his late wife Linda. Their four children have closely followed this lifestyle, with Stella McCartney becoming a leading force for leather-free fashion.

Mr. Eckstein says that Macallan also has sustainable practices: aside from the recycled and recyclable properties of the Harmony Collection, they’re also moving towards carbon neutrality by 2030, and are making efforts to shift their entire vehicle fleet to purely electric. — Joseph L. Garcia

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