Peer back through the mists of Scottish folklore and whisky has always been an integral part of Gaelic life, a tradable by-product of monasteries and farms. Medicinal ‘aqua vitae’. Then disgruntled English gin-drinkers imposed their levy’s in the early 1700’s, and suddenly illicit distilling was all the rage; tartan-clad moonshiners with undercover ways and means.

When armies of aphids all but demolished the vineyards of France and Italy, Europe’s loss was Scotland’s gain and the amber liquid became the internationally acclaimed spirit of choice.

Seasoned by war and revolution; a stubborn survivor of Prohibition and impervious to the world’s depressions and recessions, the illustrious liquor has outlived the lot, becoming a revered commodity in the process – financial returns became more glittering than gold.

The story of The Macallan goes back almost as far as that of the spirit itself. The Earl of Seafield obtained one of the earliest licences to establish a distillery in the grounds of the Elchies Estate on the bank of the River Spey, and the brand now lays claim to one of the most awarded single malt whiskies in the world. Macallan Master Craftsmen last year received the record for the most expensive whisky ever sold – that of an exceptional 64-year-old in a Lalique “Cire Perdue” crystal decanter, bought at auction for a staggering $460,000.

Which brings us to the present day – and to Her Majesty’s favourite spy.

A particularly rare 1962 bottle of Macallan, distilled the same year as the first Bond film was released, has been auctioned just this afternoon at Sotheby’s, for an impressive £9,635. Proceeds are being donated to three charities that support members of the British security and intelligence services – the charities that were handpicked by Prince Charles to benefit from the Skyfall world premiere last October.

The label on the distinguished bottle has been signed by Bond himself, Daniel Craig, along with co-stars Javier Bardem and Bérénice Marlohe.

David Cox, Director of Fine and Rare Whiskies, Edrington (owners of The Macallan), is rightfully ecstatic. His whisky advice for 2013? ‘Stay close to the eternal principals; reputation, provenance, rarity – that sums up The Macallan nicely’. Wise words indeed.