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Dalmore 15 vs Macallan 15: Discover the Better!

Discover the differences between Dalmore 15 vs Macallan 15 in this in-depth comparison and decide which Single Malt is better for You1

Dalmore 15

  • Nose: Smooth, dried fruit, hazelnut, oak.
  • Palate: Light body, raisins, baking spice, oak.
  • Finish: Short, oak spice, black pepper, dried fruit.

The nose is mild, with just a faint dried fruit note, hazelnut and a bit of oak.

On the palate, Dalmore 15 lacks in body as it feels thin. Flavor hits with raisins at first, followed by cinnamon and nutmeg, and just a tad of oak spice coming behind.

The finish is short-lived and unremarkable, a bit high in oak spice and pepper and just a touch of dried fruit.

Dalmore 15 is a crowd pleaser, a smooth and sweet sherry-bomb, non-challenging single malt and enjoyable. Although the sweetness fades towards the end as it becomes more oaky and peppery.

Overall, the Dalmore 15 is enjoyable and easy to drink but far from the best whiskies in this category as it feels too thin and watery and a finish that fails to deliver a pleasing experience.

The low proof (alcohol content) is also a bummer.

I live under the impression that in general, Dalmore has put more effort in the beauty of the packaging than in the quality of the juice as I’m yet to try a good Dalmore; they all feel weak and watered-down.

There are a few facts worth knowing about this whisky:

  • Bottled at 80 proof (40% ABV).

  • Dalmore 15 is first aged for 12 years in ex-bourbon casks to later be barreled for an additional 3 years in three different types of sherry casks: Amoroso, Apostoles and Matusalem Oloroso before they’re all married back together.

  • Dalmore is a Highland whisky located in Alness, Scotland, founded in 1839 by Alexander Matheson.

  • Dalmore is a Highland Scotch. This region has a huge diversity of flavors and characters. From lighter whiskies all the way through salty coastal malts, making them quite diverse.

Macallan 15 Double Cask

  • Nose: Cinnamon, apple, raisins, oak.
  • Palate: Burnt oak, butterscotch, dark chocolate, hazelnuts.
  • Finish: Tobacco, chocolate, cinnamon, minerals.

The first taste comes a bit peppery but it settles nicely as you let it breathe.

Macallan 15 offers butterscotch taste up front with a delicious dark chocolate hint and a rich oak note. 

Pleasant warmth hit in the back of the throat and is easy and smooth going down. Finish is toasty, long, and very tasty with touch of chocolate.

This is an excellent single malt, smooth and satisfying.

You can drink it either neat or rocks but it does not make a good mixer; stick to cheap blends to make cocktails as all whiskies become the same when drowned in fruity juices.

Overall, the Macallan 15 is a good whisky, with deep tasting notes, not overly sweet and nicely balanced.

It shows some warmth, though, but nothing overwhelming and can be tuned-down with one or two drops of water.

I have included the Macallan among the best 15 year old whiskies you can buy today!

Learn how it compares to the Macallan 18!

There are a few facts worth knowing about this whisky:

  • Bottled at 86 proof (43% ABV).

  • Aged for 15 years in a combination of American and European oak casks seasoned with sherry wine from Spain.

  • Macallan does not use caramel-coloring to make the whisky look nicer, this practice is allowed under the set of rules that govern Scotch whisky but Macallan refrains from such questionable practice.

  • The Macallan Distillery was founded in 1824 and is located in Moray, Scotland.

  • Macallan is a Speyside Whisky, the most densely populated Whisky region in the world. Speyside whiskies are known for being low in peat and full of fruit and are commonly matured in Sherry casks.

Dalmore 15 vs Macallan 15: Price comparison

Prices are approximate and stated in USD:

Dalmore 15$130
Macallan 15$157

Dalmore 15 vs Macallan 15: Which is better?

Macallan is more complex and interesting malt

WhiskeyDalmore 15Macallan 15
  • The Macallan 15 is way better than the Dalmore 15.

  • The Macallan is a more complex and flavorful dram with deeper tasting notes and a nice balance between sweet and spicy notes making it one of the best in its class.

  • The Dalmore is not bad, but feels weak and thin providing little value for the money.

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