Over the past few years we have seen an unexpected demand in providing bespoke presentation cases for select luxury spirit brands. We have been privileged to be commissioned for a number of exciting and remarkable projects, with our latest two commissions coming from John Walker and Sons and Diageo – The John Walker Master’s Edition and from Edrington – The Macallan in Lalique 72 Years Old in Lalique – The Genesis Decanter.
Neil Stevenson, Owner and Managing Director admits “that this was never a sector that the company had ever explored, however now the fit seems like an obvious one, what could be better for the finest vintages of Whisky, than the finest handcrafted boxes”.
The John Walker Masters’ Edition
The John Walker Masters’ Edition is a triple-matured Scotch whisky that has been crafted from six exceptionally rare whiskies, each aged for a minimum of 50 years. N.E.J. Stevenson were commissioned in 2018 to craft the bespoke presentation cases to house the rare double-cased black crystal Baccarat decanter.
The deceptively simple looking box has a number of highly complex construction challenges particularly the angled veneered doors. The cases were made out of Oak with a suede lined interior and a unique system that enables the doors to remain open at an angle. The exterior was part stained black and then lacquered with a semi-matt polyurethane lacquer. In total N.E.J. Stevenson hand crafted 100 cases, each one taking 16 hours to craft and 4 hours to polish and assemble.
The team were honoured to be a part of this project and it is a testament to the on-going relationship with John Walker and Sons and Diageo who have demonstrated their respect for the company by including NEJ Stevenson as one of the three Masters’ celebrated by this special edition.
The Macallan 72 Years Old in Lalique – The Genesis Decanter
Distilled in the 1940s, this exquisite single malt whisky is housed in a Lalique crystal decanter, held in a luxury, handcrafted case. NEJ Stevenson were chosen to manufacture the box, due to their experience in designing and creating unique presentation cases.
Inspired by the curved, undulating roof of the Distillery at the Macallan Estate on Speyside Scotland, the boxes are veneered in Pomelle Sapele veneer with a hand burnished full, high gloss finish. The interior bowls, which close around the unique Lalique bottle, are made from alternating layers of Maple and Mahogany, creating a showcase of exceptional craftsmanship and attention to detail.
The display case contains a drawer as part of its design, fitted with individual compartments for the crystal stopper and book, all covered in luxurious dark green book silk, leather and cream suede. Designed specifically for this box, the imposing brass catch is manufactured from polished brass with laser engraving.
To achieve a seamless finish, NEJ Stevenson used two coats of isolating lacquer and four coats of wax polyester lacquer. Nine different grades of abrasive were used to produce a perfectly smooth and flat finish, which was then expertly polished and burnished using specialist creams and lamb’s wool mops.
In total, NEJ Stevenson hand-crafted 600 individually numbered cases, each one taking 20 hours to craft, eight hours to polish and four hours to reassemble.
Neil Stevenson, Founder and Managing Director of NEJ Stevenson comments: “We are honoured to have been a part of these two prestigious projects. Our team has taken real pride in ensuring that the finished results demonstrate our commitment to the finest British craftsmanship and luxury design, to reflect the fine quality of the whisky they hold.”