CASK WHISKY FAQ

Whether you are looking to buy a cask or sell one, or just want to learn more about whisky casks, find out everything you need to know about casks of whisky in our FAQs. 

Frequently Asked Questions on Buying and Selling Casks of Whisky

We have put together answers for some of the most asked questions about buying or selling a whisky cask. If your question isn’t covered please feel free to get in touch using our online form and we can answer your question in person. Valuations and offers are provided completely free and with no obligation.

Whether you are looking to buy a cask or sell one, or just want to learn more about whisky casks, find out everything you need to know about casks of whisky in our FAQs. 

What is your cask worth?

Are you looking for a valuation on a cask you own or are considering buying?  Fill in as many details as you can below and we will be happy to provide a free no obligation valuation.

Whisky Cask Valuation Form

What is your cask worth?

Are you looking for a valuation on a cask you own or are considering buying?  Fill in as many details as you can below and we will be happy to provide a free no obligation valuation.

Whisky Cask Valuation Form

How do I sell a cask of whisky?

We can provide you with a valuation of your cask and provide you with offers from our international client base. Valuations and offers are free of charge and there is no obligation to accept an offer.

Use the form below to get in contact and find out more about selling a cask of whisky.

How do I sell a cask of whisky?

We can provide you with a valuation of your cask and provide you with offers from our international client base. Valuations and offers are free of charge and there is no obligation to accept an offer.

Use the form below to get in contact and find out more about selling a cask of whisky.

How much is a cask of whisky worth?

The price of a cask depends on several factors. The same way that the valuation of two identical houses in different locations may vary, two seemingly identical casks might have totally different contents and thus values.

The 5 factors that affect cask value factors are the distillery, the age of the whisky, the cask size and type, the alcohol content of the cask and the number of litres remaining within the cask, we have discussed these in more detail here.

If you would like to know exactly how much a specific cask of whisky is worth to sell or buy then please get in touch using the form below.

How much is a cask of whisky worth?

The price of a cask depends on several factors. The same way that the valuation of two identical houses in different locations may vary, two seemingly identical casks might have totally different contents and thus values.

The 5 factors that affect cask value factors are the distillery, the age of the whisky, the cask size and type, the alcohol content of the cask and the number of litres remaining within the cask, we have discussed these in more detail here.

If you would like to know exactly how much a specific cask of whisky is worth to sell or buy then please get in touch using the form below.

How much is in a cask of whisky?

There are several sizes of barrels used in the making of Scotch whisky.  The most common are:

  • Quarter cask 45-50 litres
  • American Standard Barrel 190-200 litres
  • Hogshead 225-250 litres
  • Barrique 250-300 litres
  • Puncheon 450-500 litres
  • Butt 475-500 litres
  • Machine Puncheon 500 litres
  • Port Pipe 550-650 litres
  • Drum 600-650 litres

It is important to note that the contents of a cask decreases at an average rate of 2% per year – known as the angel’s share. If you want to know how much whisky is in a cask older than 5 years then the cask should be regauged in order to get a current figure. What is a regauge?

How much is in a cask of whisky?

There are several sizes of barrels used in the making of Scotch whisky.  The most common are:

  • Quarter cask 45-50 litres
  • American Standard Barrel 190-200 litres
  • Hogshead 225-250 litres
  • Barrique 250-300 litres
  • Puncheon 450-500 litres
  • Butt 475-500 litres
  • Machine Puncheon 500 litres
  • Port Pipe 550-650 litres
  • Drum 600-650 litres

It is important to note that the contents of a cask decreases at an average rate of 2% per year – known as the angel’s share. If you want to know how much whisky is in a cask older than 5 years then the cask should be regauged in order to get a current figure. What is a regauge?

What is a cask of whisky?

A cask of whisky is a volume of whisky which is maturing in a barrel – commonly referred to as a cask. The Barrels used to mature whisky are made of oak and if it is Scotch whisky then were most likely used for another purpose (such as making sherry or bourbon) before being filled with new spirit and left to mature for at least 3 years. Bourbon is matured in new oak.

What is a cask of whisky?

A cask of whisky is a volume of whisky which is maturing in a barrel – commonly referred to as a cask. The Barrels used to mature whisky are made of oak and if it is Scotch whisky then were most likely used for another purpose (such as making sherry or bourbon) before being filled with new spirit and left to mature for at least 3 years. Bourbon is matured in new oak.

What is a hogshead of whisky?

A hogshead is a type of cask used to mature whisky. A hogshead can contain 225-250 litres of alcohol. Hogshead are one of the most common type of cask used to mature Scotch whisky and are often made from ex-bourbon barrels.

What is a hogshead of whisky?

A hogshead is a type of cask used to mature whisky. A hogshead can contain 225-250 litres of alcohol. Hogshead are one of the most common type of cask used to mature Scotch whisky and are often made from ex-bourbon barrels.

What is a hogshead cask?

A hogshead cask is another name for a hogshead barrel as discussed above.

What is a hogshead cask?

A hogshead cask is another name for a hogshead barrel as discussed above.

What kind of barrels are used to make Scotch whisky?

The Scotch Whisky Association states, “Scotch Whisky can only be matured or finished in new oak casks or oak casks which were previously used to mature wine, beer/ale or spirits.”

The most common types of barrel seen for maturing whisky are ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks but other casks are often used such as ex-rum casks and ex-wine casks

Scottish whisky laws allow a barrel to be used more than once and casks that have already been used to mature whisky as referred to as refill casks. American Bourbon casks can only be used once and consequently the bourbon industry supplies a good number of casks to the whisky trade in Scotland.

What kind of barrels are used to make Scotch whisky?

The Scotch Whisky Association states, “Scotch Whisky can only be matured or finished in new oak casks or oak casks which were previously used to mature wine, beer/ale or spirits.”

The most common types of barrel seen for maturing whisky are ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks but other casks are often used such as ex-rum casks and ex-wine casks

Scottish whisky laws allow a barrel to be used more than once and casks that have already been used to mature whisky as referred to as refill casks. American Bourbon casks can only be used once and consequently the bourbon industry supplies a good number of casks to the whisky trade in Scotland.

Is Scotch aged in charred barrels?

Scotch whisky is aged in charred barrels for a number of reasons. Charring is also known as toasting the cask and it converts the wood sugars into vanilla and caramel flavours that are seen to enhance the flavour of the whisky. Additionally the charred layer acts as somewhat of a filter, absorbing unwanted flavours from the whisky and further improving the flavour.

Is Scotch aged in charred barrels?

Scotch whisky is aged in charred barrels for a number of reasons. Charring is also known as toasting the cask and it converts the wood sugars into vanilla and caramel flavours that are seen to enhance the flavour of the whisky. Additionally the charred layer acts as somewhat of a filter, absorbing unwanted flavours from the whisky and further improving the flavour.

Are all whisky barrels charred?

Most whisky barrels are charred by burning the inside of the barrel due to the positive impact charring is seen to have on the flavour of the whisky. Different degrees of charring are used. A long exposure to flames leaves the inside of the barrel like alligator skin and the surface is broken down.  Toasting a cask, often done when a cask is re-milled, is done for a much shorter period of time.

Are all whisky barrels charred?

Most whisky barrels are charred by burning the inside of the barrel due to the positive impact charring is seen to have on the flavour of the whisky. Different degrees of charring are used. A long exposure to flames leaves the inside of the barrel like alligator skin and the surface is broken down.  Toasting a cask, often done when a cask is re-milled, is done for a much shorter period of time.

Why is whisky aged in oak barrels?

There are several reasons whisky is aged in oak barrels. Oak was used traditionally as it is a strong an workable material, capable of being made into casks which can hold over 500 litres.

In addition, the chemical compounds in the wood enhance the flavours of the whisky. In the modern whisky industry both Scotch whisky and American bourbon must be matured in oak barrels or casks.

Why is whisky aged in oak barrels?

There are several reasons whisky is aged in oak barrels. Oak was used traditionally as it is a strong an workable material, capable of being made into casks which can hold over 500 litres.

In addition, the chemical compounds in the wood enhance the flavours of the whisky. In the modern whisky industry both Scotch whisky and American bourbon must be matured in oak barrels or casks.

What does the age of a whisky mean?

The age of a whisky is the time the whisky was matured for in the barrel or cask. Once it has been bottled a whisky does not continue to age as glass is inert.

What does the age of a whisky mean?

The age of a whisky is the time the whisky was matured for in the barrel or cask. Once it has been bottled a whisky does not continue to age as glass is inert.

What is a first fill barrel?

Barrels or casks are often re-used in the whisky production process. A first fill cask implies that it was the first time that particular cask had been used to mature whisky. Subsequent uses of the cask draw less and less flavour from the cask and may be re-milled, revealing an entirely new surface in the cask.

First fill barrels or first fill casks often impart a strong flavour of the previous use in the whisky as it matures. For example a first fill sherry cask may have strong sherry notes and a deep colour.

First fill casks can overpower a whisky if left to mature for too long, therefore first fill casks can be more suitable for shorter term maturation. Conversely refill casks can therefore be better suited to long term maturation of the cask and can allow more of the spirit’s distillation flavours to come through.

What is a first fill barrel?

Barrels or casks are often re-used in the whisky production process. A first fill cask implies that it was the first time that particular cask had been used to mature whisky. Subsequent uses of the cask draw less and less flavour from the cask and may be re-milled, revealing an entirely new surface in the cask.

First fill barrels or first fill casks often impart a strong flavour of the previous use in the whisky as it matures. For example a first fill sherry cask may have strong sherry notes and a deep colour.

First fill casks can overpower a whisky if left to mature for too long, therefore first fill casks can be more suitable for shorter term maturation. Conversely refill casks can therefore be better suited to long term maturation of the cask and can allow more of the spirit’s distillation flavours to come through.

What is a sherry oak?

Sherry oak means that the oak cask or barrel was originally used to mature sherry. Ex-sherry casks are the most expensive types of cask used in the maturing of Scotch whisky and whisky matured in sherry casks commands a premium.

What is a sherry oak?

Sherry oak means that the oak cask or barrel was originally used to mature sherry. Ex-sherry casks are the most expensive types of cask used in the maturing of Scotch whisky and whisky matured in sherry casks commands a premium.

What is a quarter cask?

A quarter cask is a cask of whisky that contains around 80 litres. Quarter casks are often used as they allow the whisky to mature faster than a larger cask, which allows the distillery to get more whisky to market in a shorter time frame.

What is a quarter cask?

A quarter cask is a cask of whisky that contains around 80 litres. Quarter casks are often used as they allow the whisky to mature faster than a larger cask, which allows the distillery to get more whisky to market in a shorter time frame.

What is a bourbon cask?

A Bourbon cask is a cask that has been previously used in the production of bourbon whiskey. Bourbon casks are made from American oak and charred on the inside. The subsequent layer of charcoal acts as a filter, removing any impurities and adding sought after flavours. By law, a cask can only be used once to make bourbon, which results in a surplus of ex-bourbon casks that can be used for Scotch whisky maturation.

What is a bourbon cask?

A Bourbon cask is a cask that has been previously used in the production of bourbon whiskey. Bourbon casks are made from American oak and charred on the inside. The subsequent layer of charcoal acts as a filter, removing any impurities and adding sought after flavours. By law, a cask can only be used once to make bourbon, which results in a surplus of ex-bourbon casks that can be used for Scotch whisky maturation.

What is the value of a cask of Springbank?

As no two casks are the same, it is impossible to give a value for a cask without knowing the specific details of that cask – much like you could not give the value of a car without knowing the mileage, age, etc. The value of a cask of Springbank depends on the following factors:

  • Age of whisky
  • Type of cask
  • Size of cask
  • Regauge details – alcoholic strength & either bulk litres or litres of alcohol

You can read more about how these factors impact the value of a cask here.

If you would like us to provide a free valuation on a cask you are looking to buy or sell then we are able to help. Please click here to fill in the form at the top of the page and someone will be in contact to discuss your cask of Springbank.

What is the value of a cask of Springbank?

As no two casks are the same, it is impossible to give a value for a cask without knowing the specific details of that cask – much like you could not give the value of a car without knowing the mileage, age, etc. The value of a cask of Springbank depends on the following factors:

  • Age of whisky
  • Type of cask
  • Size of cask
  • Regauge details – alcoholic strength & either bulk litres or litres of alcohol

You can read more about how these factors impact the value of a cask here.

If you would like us to provide a free valuation on a cask you are looking to buy or sell then we are able to help. Please click here to fill in the form at the top of the page and someone will be in contact to discuss your cask of Springbank.

What is the value of a cask of Macallan?

The value of Macallan whisky varies from around £1,250 a litre to more than £4,000 a litre – which as you can see is a fairly large range. The reason for this variation is that no two casks are the same. Indeed, much like you could not give the value of a Ferrari without knowing the mileage, age, model etc., it is impossible to give an accurate value for a cask without knowing the specific details of that cask.

The value of a cask of Macallan depends on the following factors:

  • Age of whisky
  • Type of cask
  • Size of cask
  • Regauge details – alcoholic strength & either bulk litres or litres of alcohol

You can read more about how these factors impact the value of a cask here. And we have written a blog post on the finer details of variations in prices of Macallan casks.

If you would like us to provide a free valuation on a cask you are looking to buy or sell then we are able to help. Please click here to fill in the form at the top of the page and someone will be in contact to discuss your cask of Macallan.

What is the value of a cask of Macallan?

The value of Macallan whisky varies from around £1,250 per regauged litre of alcohol to more than £4,000 per regauged litre of alcohol  – which as you can see is a fairly large range. The reason for this variation is that no two casks are the same. Indeed, much like you could not give the value of a Ferrari without knowing the mileage, age, model etc., it is impossible to give an accurate value for a cask without knowing the specific details of that cask.

The value of a cask of Macallan depends on the following factors:

  • Age of whisky
  • Type of cask
  • Size of cask
  • Regauge details – alcoholic strength & either bulk litres or litres of alcohol

You can read more about how these factors impact the value of a cask here. And we have written a blog post on the finer details of variations in prices of Macallan casks.

If you would like us to provide a free valuation on a cask you are looking to buy or sell then we are able to help. Please click here to fill in the form at the top of the page and someone will be in contact to discuss your cask of Macallan.

What is the value of a cask of Ardbeg?

The value of Ardbeg whisky varies because no two casks are the same. Indeed, much like you could not give the value of a house without knowing the location, size, age, etc., it is impossible to give an accurate value for a cask without knowing the specific details of that cask.

The value of a cask of Ardbeg depends on the following factors:

  • Age of whisky
  • Type of cask
  • Size of cask
  • Regauge details – alcoholic strength & either bulk litres or litres of alcohol

You can read more about how these factors impact the value of a cask here.

If you would like us to provide a free valuation on a cask you are looking to buy or sell then we are able to help. Please click here to fill in the form at the top of the page or use the form below and someone will be in contact to discuss your cask of Ardbeg.

What is the value of a cask of Ardbeg?

The value of Ardbeg whisky varies because no two casks are the same. Indeed, much like you could not give the value of a house without knowing the location, size, age, etc., it is impossible to give an accurate value for a cask without knowing the specific details of that cask.

The value of a cask of Ardbeg depends on the following factors:

  • Age of whisky
  • Type of cask
  • Size of cask
  • Regauge details – alcoholic strength & either bulk litres or litres of alcohol

You can read more about how these factors impact the value of a cask here.

If you would like us to provide a free valuation on a cask you are looking to buy or sell then we are able to help. Please click here to fill in the form at the top of the page, or use the form below and someone will be in contact to discuss your cask of Ardbeg.

What is my cask worth?

Are you looking for a valuation on a cask you are looking to buy or potentially sell? We are experts in the valuation and brokerage of casks. In order to provide you with an accurate valuation please provide as much of the below information as you can.

Whisky Cask Valuation Form

What is my cask worth?

Are you looking for a valuation on a cask you are looking to buy or potentially sell? We are experts in the valuation and brokerage of casks. In order to provide you with an accurate valuation please provide as much of the below information as you can.

Whisky Cask Valuation Form