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The Balvenie 12 year old Double Wood is an everyday whisky because of flavours which do not create a sense of dread when encountered repeatedly. This also helps support the sense that the Double Wood tastes like whisky can be expected by many.
The nose is sweet and largely vanilla, although both refreshing and very light bitter notes can be detected, very leafy smells, both of them.
The taste begins sweet, mainly because the nose set an expectation of fruity flavours. This occurs every time, regardless of familiarity with this dram, however quickly moves into the main body of the palate. Interestingly, on passing the core of the Double Wood's palate is of light smoke, with complimentary sherry notes. However, close inspection reveals that the 'smoke' is really a combination of walnut and cinnamon spiciness.
The finish is a respectable length, and merely involves the taste building, then waning rapidly. The taste which builds may be nutty, or smokey depending on how much attention is paid on the palate.
Not a very complex whisky, but with a lot of personality. Great as a pathway to more peaty Highlanders, and useful for solitary contemplation.