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Balblair 1997

This one's got balls!

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@markjedi1Review by @markjedi1

26th Feb 2010


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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I suggest you also read my review of the Balblair 1989 for comparison. But allow me to elaborate a bit on vintages. The Balblairs are vintage expressions, because the do not have an age statement, but only stage the year of distilling. A 12 Year Old will contain whisky that is at least 12 years old, but might also contain whisky that is 13 or even 14 years old. Not so with this vintage expression. This one only contains whisky from 1997.

On to the review then.

The nose is again fruity, very much so, but has a lot more depth than it's older brother (the 1989). I smell passion fruit, green apples and even banana. Actually, it reminds me of banana peel - does that make sense? There is truly a lot going on here.

It's very creamy and reminds me of marzipan, toasted bread and dried tropical fruits, most prominently pineapple. Amazing and nicely peppery.

The finish is spicy with a touch of cinnamon. And neverending. Lovely.

This is a lot better than the 8 year older version. At a price tag of something along 35 pounds, my choice of Balblair was an easy one. This one's got balls!

(if anyone's got the 1979, I'm in the market for a sample - cheers!)

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Lee commented

I've been a whisky drinker for a while and enjoy it for the taste, feeling and kick it gives. It's only recently I've tried to associate notes and flavours with in the mix and still struggle picking things out unless it's obvious.

With regards to this whisky the banana peel made sense, I also thought it had a vanilla/creamy smell and taste and although the I enjoyed it I was left with a bitter aftertaste - something I've not had from other brands and this spoiled it for me. How would you describe this bitter taste and did you get it too?



13 years ago 0

markjedi1 commented

Lee, I'm glad the banana peel made sense then. I'm a novice and write from the heart (or try to) and sometimes, when re-reading my stuff, it kinda sounds strange. However, I didn't get that bitter aftertaste (or I would have mentioned it), so cannot describe it for you. Still, this is good dram, no?

13 years ago 0

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