The Macallan is relaunching its Rare Cask expression in limited edition batches with new packaging to enhance consumer education.The Edrington-owned brand has launched the first of three Rare Cask batches for 2018. Batch numbers and the year of release will now feature on the new packaging, which is said to add an “element of collectability”. The new design also aligns with the new look of Macallan's core range of single malts. Each Rare Cask bottling exclusively uses first-fill Sherry-seasoned oak casks. Every batch represents a volume of 50 Sherry butts. While three batches will be released in 2018, four are planned for each subsequent year. “The rarity of Rare Cask lies in the limited number of first-fill Sherry-seasoned casks,” said Nick Savage, The Macallan master distiller. “This whisky truly exhibits the art of cask selection and the role of our whisky making team to hand-pick the casks for each batch. The casks give the greatest contribution to the character and are the only source of the rich mahogany colour. “It is one of The Macallan’s most complex yet balanced whiskies that we’ve created, with soft notes of rich oak, vanilla and chocolate.” Batch one of The Macallan Rare Cask is priced at £230 (US$300).