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Color: The 1990 matured for 21 years in ex-bourbon casks and had a 2 year finishing on Oloroso sherry butts. It has a rich amber color and forms long elegant tears on the side of the glass.
Nose: A rich nose of raisins, oranges and milk chocolate. Pim’s biscuits (Belgian chocolate biscuits with orange marmelade) and butterscotch. There’s also a lot of sweet spices and ‘peperkoek’ (breakfast cake made from rye, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg and sugar) with honey. Water unleashes red fruits. Strawberries and redcurrants ready to be picked on a hot summer’s day.
Taste: It is less sweet than the nose. I’m discovering mostly spices. Black pepper, nutmeg and cloves. Then oranges and chocolate. But this time it’s more like candied orange peel dipped in chocolate. Water emphasizes the bitterness of orange peel.
Finish: A long soft finish with oranges and an oily texture.
Conclusion: This 1990 Vintage is an atypical Balblair. The fresh and floral signature are replaced by complex sherry flavours. A short marriage with Oloroso butts gives it a unique character with notes of orange and chocolate.
My original tasting notes (in Dutch) can be found on my tumblr blog A Tasty Dram: tastydram.tumblr.com/post/71236870001/…