Balvenie needs no introduction from me, as it is one of my favourite distilleries that has almost been overshadowed by its sister distillery Glenfiddich for so long. Over more recent years whisky lovers are really starting to appreciate just how good the whisky coming from within the walls actually is and David Stewart, the one and only Malt Master has created a fantastic legacy for this distillery and the introduction of the 15 yo single barrel was just genius! There really was not many distilleries doing this and still isn’t ..
The introduction of this single barrel into the core range just showcased the delicious whisky that was on offer but alas this range ( the bourbon cask ) is now gone and has been replaced by the 15 yo single cask ( Sherry ) which is great for me but it would have been fantastic to see both sitting side by side on the shop shelf..
Each bottle of this Balvenie 15 single barrel tells it’s own story, they are from one single bourbon barrel, limited to no more than 350 bottles world wide, bottled at 47.8% abv..
I do believe no colour has been added, The bottle on review today is cask #8586 for which I have bottle’s 46 and 49.. This was distilled 15-08-1997 and bottled 31-10-2012.
Nose.. A delicious honey, caramel and digestive biscuits sweetness engulf the senses before a subtle nuttiness with soft vanilla, spices, citrus and chocolate notes just tease you to dive in and taste.
Palate.. The sweetness and malty notes fill your mouth upon impact, while the gentle spices and soft oak take your senses into overload. Some soft fruit notes and vanilla arrive on the back of orange and lemon peels, while that chocolate note just creeps back in.
Finish.. Soft spices and gentle oak linger with a lovely sweetness.
Thoughts.. I almost didn’t do a review for this Balvenie Single cask whisky knowing how hard it is to find it these days, but my thoughts were this is just too good to let it just disappear into oblivion without one last stand.. When you take a look deeper into any distillery then it’s the single casks that tell you more of a story ( in my opinion ! ) of what the distillery is all about. The general release is in a way a made up story created by those master blenders in order to give a general opinion of what to expect but the single cask is of course the warts and all type of story.. Yes I know we won’t be given a really bad cask but the general idea is that we learn a lot more from the cask about wood maturation and the distillery flavour than we ever will from a ” vatted ” whisky.. If you see one of these bourbon single barrels then snap it up if it’s in your price range.. You won’t regret it..
Do I like these.. you bet I do !!