Balvenie 12 Year Old DoubleWood
Winnie the Pooh's favorite
Review by @casualtorture
This bottle was a gift from my real estate agent after we bought our house. She enjoys bourbon mostly and during the house hunting process we often discussed whisky and I told her she needed to try scotch. Well she bought me this on the promise that I would let her try it. And she did, and she enjoyed it, but she's still a bourbon gal.
This bottle has been opened one month and is 2/3 full. This is the 43% bottling.
Nose: Definitely pick up the sherry cask on the nose. Subtle, dryer, lighter sherried notes compared to say Glenmorangie Lasanta or even Glenfiddich 12. White grapes, pear, grassy and a bit floral. A pinch of caramel and vanilla.
Palate: Honey, and more honey. Lots of honey. Maybe not as much as when i first opened it, but still veritable amounts of honey. Other light notes of white grape, vanilla, apple and pear. It is very sessionable and "smooth" if a bit one dimensional.
Finish: More honey on the finish with some vanilla as well. Pleasant enough.
Overall: Pretty standard 12yo Speysider nose if on the lighter side. Lots of nice honey notes. Not that complex. It's very drinkable. However, at $65USD + tax there are several other options I would pick up for a sessionable scotch.
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This was one of the first Single Malts that made me appreciate the flavours which can be found in whiskies. Mind you, that was way back in the second half of the 1990s' decade. I had left a bottle at my future in laws home because they didn't drink Single Malts. The Balvenie, I remembered got better as the fill level dropped and air exposure increased over the few years that the bottle lived in their cabinet. "The" Balvenie was the first single malt brand that ushered in a parabolic pricing in Canada. @casualtorture nice review.
4 years ago 3Who liked this?
@fiddich1980 Awesome, I enjoy your poetic responses. I think a lot of us have those malts that hold a special place as a "gateway" whisky so to speak. I will always remember the glass of Highland Park 12 on my 21st birthday. Opened a whole new world.
4 years ago 3Who liked this?
@casualtorture - Nice review!
You pretty much sum my thoughts up on this one. That bit about price and other availability is why I've never owned a bottle of this. I do have it often in bars or restaurants though and I've had the 43% version as well, which is definitely a slight improvement on the 40%.
4 years ago 1Who liked this?
Balvenie is a whisky that disappoints me. It was one of the first whiskies I really got into as a beginner. As a result I want to like it but frequently find myself let down by it. It's way overpriced for what it is as a starter. And then its invariably bottled at 40% in the UK, chill filtered and coloured.
It's frustrating because I can't help thinking it could be so much better than it is. If this was given a proper craft presentation and sensibly priced I reckon it would rival the likes of Benromach as a 'go to' Speysider.
4 years ago 5Who liked this?
@Wierdo, I can see The Balvenie people cringing as they read your comment. I am in the same place that you are with Balvenie. I have had it all over the place. Some have been fabulous and others quite disappointing, with the bottom line being that I am unsure how much trust to place in them when I consider the purchase of a bottle, especially a bottle blind purchase from a batch of any of their products of which I have not tasted from that precise batch.
4 years ago 0