Balblair’s claim to fame was the fact that they did not use age statements but vintages on their bottles. But the range was revamped in March 2019 and now it boasts ages on the labels once more. There is a new 12, 15, 18 and even 25 Year Old, all bottled at 46%. The new 25 will set you back some 600 EUR. Ouch. I will try an oldie from 2002, bottled in 2012 so about 10 years young. They do not come much paler than this, I think.
It starts fresh, young and innocent on the nose. Some orchard fruit, lime, melon, gooseberries, green grapes, all very summery and fresh. Floral too. I get wild flowers, hay and chamomile. Barley sugars and a good helping of honey. A leaf of mint. Quite docile.
That continues nicely on the palate, although a mildly sour and bitter note joins in. Grapefruit becomes big and some pepper, ginger and oak appear. A touch zesty. Much better than the nose promised, but still fairly simple.
The finish is bittersweet on more grapefruit, but this gets a bit softer thanks to some pineapple and juicy pears.
Very summery whisky that you can put on the table when friends come over. Bring out the glasses and throw away the cork. This bottle will not survive the night. Thanks for the sample, Patrick!