Looking to buy?
How it works
We like to think we make buying easy, but should you require any help with bidding or using the dashboard, please give us a call on +44 (0)203 746 3030 or email us on firstname.lastname@example.org
Step 1 - Register to Bid
This auction, once live, is not in the public domain. Interested parties must register in order to view the auction live online. In order to bid as well as view, you will need to validate your account with a £5 transaction.
This is a one-off payment and will enable you to continue watching every auction we have in the future. Please understand that we need to do this to confirm all registered bidders for security reasons. To register, you must agree to our Terms and Conditions.
Once registered, it’s up to you to keep your account information strictly confidential as you will be responsible for all bids made through your account.
Get started and register here.
Step 2 - Understanding our Cask Auction
Whether or not you have bid in an online auction before, it is important that you understand how it works.
We hold auctions four times per year; once every three months.
The Auction will run for 10 days, starting at 12:00hrs on a Friday and concluding at 18:00hrs on a Sunday. Bidding is only accepted whilst the auction is running and must be submitted via the online platform.
The items for sale in our auction are oak casks containing genuine maturing single-malt Scotch Whisky. The spirit inside these casks is distilled at wide variety of distilleries from all over Scotland. Casks come traditionally in three different sizes; barrels, hogsheads and sherry butts.
All of our casks are held in secure HMRC Government bonded warehouses, most of which are under the control of distillery owners. While lying in these warehouses, duty and tax are suspended until the whisky is eventually bottled (under bond). The lots will be sold in bond, and a cask must remain in the bonded warehouse until it is bottled, at which point alcohol duty and VAT must be paid.
For clarification, you will not receive delivery of the cask to your home/business address. You do not pay any VAT on the hammer price; you are then free to take ownership. The lots on our auction are owned privately and are lying at different warehouses across Scotland. To be labelled as ‘Scotch’ whisky, the cask must mature in Scotland by law.
All of the lots will have estimated prices for guidance, and some of them may have a reserve price at the discretion of the private owner.
Typical owners are private individuals who have received posession of these casks either from purchase, inheritance, or gift.
Step 3 - Understanding the lots
We provide as much information as possible about casks for sale in our auction. This will include basic information such as which particular distillery the whisky was distilled at, when the cask was filled, and what the cask type is.
Casks come in three sizes; barrels at 200 bulk litres, hogsheads (essentially barrels re-assembled with extra staves) at 250 litres, and sherry butts at 500 litres. Most barrels and hogsheads will have been used for the maturation of bourbon whisky, although sherry-seasoned hogsheads are not unheard of. Sherry butts will fetch higher prices than barrels not only for the much larger quantity of whisky that they hold, but also for the premium attached to sherry-matured scotch.
To find out more about cask types, including less-known varieties, click here.
Also of great importance is the ABV (alcohol by volume, measured in percentage) and the litres of pure alcohol (or ‘LOA’) in a cask. Casks are measured this way, rather than in bulk litres of whisky, for alcohol tax purposes.
With young casks, these will be the original litres of alcohol on filling (OLA). Older casks are re-gauged to provide updates on their maturation, and this new and more accurate information is known as the re-gauged litres of alcohol (or RLA). The RLA will always show a lower ABV and LOA due to the natural evaporation of both alcohol and water through the oak as a result of maturation (the angel’s share).
The estimated number of bottles will always be based on the most recent re-gauge (within the last six months), the ABV of the whisky and a standard 70cl bottle size. Please be advised this is an estimate only; bottle estimates are for guidance only and are not an exact figure.
All lots have an estimate; this has an upper and lower figure and is for guidance purposes only. Some lots will also have a reserve price, which is mutually agreed on between us and the seller.
Step 4 - Placing your bids
Once you have registered and made the decision to bid on a cask of your choice, you can enter your bid. Please note that once your bid is submitted, you enter a contractual agreement with us, your bid cannot be withdrawn, and you are committed to your offer.
We’ve included the functionality for you to enter a maximum bid, and we will increase the bid level of the lot incrementally until it reaches your maximum bid.
|Current bid||Bidding Increment|
|£1,000 - £2,499||£50|
|£2,500 - £4,999||£100|
|£5,000 - £24,999||£250|
|£25,000 - £49,999||£500|
Step 5 - Monitor your bids
Log onto your personal account to access the dashboard and your watchlist, and monitor all of your bids.
Here, you will be able to see if you are the current winning bidder, know if you have been outbid, and see current live bids on lots in your watchlist. We will also email you every time you have been outbid and give you a chance to act accordingly.
If you have been successful in the auction, you will receive an email confirmation from us, and additionally a notification through your dashboard.
Step 6 - Payment
Your confirmation email will contain instructions on how to pay for your cask. We ask for full and final payment within 7 working days. Before we invoice you, we will need to conduct our HMRC Due Diligence where we’ll require a small amount of information from you, including proof of address and a photo ID.
Due to the sensitive nature of alcohol and the high values attached to casks of single malt whisky, we do not accept card payment and Paypal. International transfers of any currency will be accepted through BACS, Swift or Revolute.
Late payment on lots in breach of the contract of sale will incur fees, or result in the seller reserving the right to cancel the sale. Please see our terms and conditions for full details.
Step 7 - Fees, Commission, Storage and insurance, and Movement.
The buyers' fee is 15% of the final auction price.
Storage and insurance is a responsibility taken on by the new owner. It may range from £28 - £110 per year; this varies between warehouses. And the value of your cask must also be considered. Transport of casks between warehouses, if requested, also incurs costs. This is normally between £100 - £200, depending on the distances involved.
We are happy to assist with your cask management - you can read more about your options here.
Step 8 - Transfer of ownership
As soon as we receive payment for your cask, we will provide you with a receipt and written confirmation of transfer of ownership, certification, and/or a delivery order (DO).