Macallan's New Scotch Collection Is In Perfect 'Harmony' With Your Coffee

Scotland and Ethiopia may be worlds apart in distance and culture, but that didn't stop each country's liquid experts from joining forces in a new release for 2022. The Macallan, one of Scotland's luxury single-malt whiskey masters, is known for experimental creations and special limited-release collections (via The Macallan) ranging from the James Bond 60th Anniversary Release to The Anecdotes of Ages art-collection series to The Macallan Horizon joint venture with Bentley Motors, and The Macallan Masters of Photography: Magnum Edition.

Befitting a country that reveres whiskey-making as a true art form, The Macallan broadens the concept to embrace everything from history to visual artistry, environmentalism, and now, gastronomy. It's, therefore, no surprise that the craftsmanship of Ethiopian masters would become a central and collaborative force in the newest incarnation of the original Harmony Collection whiskeys, known as Harmony II.

The collection launched with Harmony I, a celebration of chocolate through a partnership with the Roca brothers and the Casa Cacao chocolate factory and hotel in Spain. Single-malt whiskey with chocolate notes defined the Harmony Collection — until now. In a press release via Cision on October 25, 2022, The Macallan revealed its new flavor profile and Ethiopian partnership, along with a surprising twist from the natural world.

Coffee and natural materials

The Harmony Collection showcases the company's connection to nature and how it informs its spirits. In that vein, Harmony II turns to the earthy world of coffee beans. The Macallan whiskey maker Steven Bremner hosted a coffee-centric masterclass, joining forces with coffee growers, roasters, baristas, and world-class coffee experts for a deep dive into the complexity of coffee from seed to cup, explains the company's release announcement via Cision. The result is two deeply flavored single-malt whiskeys that complement, meld, and pair with Ethiopian arabica coffees.

The first member of the Harmony II Collection is the sweet espresso-toned Intense Arabica whiskey, with notes of tiramisu, sweet oak, and dark chocolate. The second member is the Smooth Arabica, a milder single malt bearing hints of ground coffee, vanilla, and hazelnut. Both came to fruition in carefully selected oak casks to infuse the flavor essences of Ethiopian coffee beans, and both have ABV ratings above 40%. Coffee isn't actually an ingredient in these spirits, explains Daily Coffee News, rather serving as deep inspiration. Bremner acknowledges the parallel journeys of coffee and whiskey, stating that "each requires unique skills and craftsmanship to achieve depth and complexity of taste."

Nodding to The Macallan's commitment to sustainability, the Harmony Collection incorporates sustainable packaging using natural-world materials that have outlived their intended lifespan. With Harmony II, that aspiration takes the form of a presentation box that uses repurposed husks from coffee beans, which are by-products in the coffee industry (via The Macallan).