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1953 Glenfarclas and Hine in unique alliance

Glenfarclas Single Malt and Hine Cognac have joined forces with N.E.J. Stevenson, the Queen’s cabinet maker, to create a unique Coronation collaboration of obelisks crafted from English oak, one housing a bottle of Glenfarclas 1953 and the other a bottle of Hine 1953 both products of a single family cask.

Obelisks rose to prominence in ancient Egypt as tributes to the sun and were often placed in pairs at the entrance to temples or pyramids. Some were sent to Rome at the height of the Empire, in the eighteenth century they reappeared as features in art and architecture of the European neo-classical period, and during the nineteenth century giant examples were shipped to and displayed in London and Paris, where they may be seen today.

These limited edition pairs of 125 classically inspired obelisks have been commissioned from and hand-made by skilled craftsmen at N.E. J. Stevenson, cabinet makers by Royal Appointment to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, at their workshops just outside Rugby, England.

Made from English oak (Quercus robur), the tall, tapering shafts can be detached from the square pedestal bases, decorated with brown oak discs representing the sun, to reveal a rare numbered bottle of Hine 1953 and a rare numbered bottle of Glenfarclas 1953 both the product of a single family cask. Each obelisk features a secret drawer, the front of the Hine drawer is faced with oak from the Hine 1953 cask and the front of the Glenfarclas drawer is faced with oak from the Glenfarclas 1953 cask.   

This unique 1953 Glenfarclas is the oldest cask of whisky owned by the distillery, the contents of a single Spanish oak sherry cask bottled unfiltered at 43.9%, natural cask strength. It has a gleaming rich sandy oak colour. Initially, a rich sherried nose which develops to reveal lovely toffee notes, followed by delicate oak with crisp fresh  at the bottom of the glass.  A little air truly opens up this special Speyside malt whisky. Once it has had time to breathe, a warm taste of spices, stewed fruits and liquorice develops into an incredibly long finish of toffee apples and cinnamon sticks.

George Grant, director of sales and sixth generation of the Grant family commented:  “It always send a shiver down my spine, when drinking such an old whisky. My father was 18 months old when this was made, My Grandfather made this and I get the honour of sharing this magnificent whisky with you.”

The Hine 1953 is a perfect example of an elegant Grande Champagne Cognac from one of the greatest vintages of the 20th century.

“A shimmering delicate amber in colour, a cognac which exhibits both body and distinction, aromas of spice, honey and walnuts from the French oak cask and the high humidity of the Hine cellars.  This fine old cognac seduces the palate with its velvety roundness, mellowness and taste of spices and passion fruit which harmoniously linger together, leaving a delicious long aftertaste.

“Normally Hine Vintage Cognacs reach maturity after several decades. Unusually, this single family cask of 1953 has spent 60 years maturing in the same French oak barrel and has been bottled unfiltered at natural cask strength of 41.9% to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Coronation of Queen Elizabeth II. In 1962 Hine was greatly honoured to be the first and, to this day, the only Cognac House to be granted The Royal Warrant by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

Bernard Hine, honorary chairman and sixth generation of the Hine family recollected:  “I remember I was with my cousin Jacques watching the Coronation of the Queen on television on the 2nd of June 1953 at Jacques Hine’s grandmother’s house (1st floor of the 18, Quai de l’Orangerie) – now the Hine guest house. This was the very first time in my life I watched television.“

Just 125 of these pairs of obelisks have been made; reflecting the extraordinary rarity of these outstanding spirits. A pair of obelisks containing numbered bottles of Hine and Glenfarclas 1953, each individually signed by Bernard Hine and George Grant, will retail at around £14,000 inc. vat.  Available from:  Glenfrclas tel: 0187 500234 email:, Pol Roger tel: 01432 262800 email:  




29 May 2013 - Felicity Murray