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Balvenie 12 Year Old DoubleWood

What is all the fuss about?

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@Pierre_WReview by @Pierre_W

12th May 2013


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Balvenie distillery in located in Dufftown and was established in 1892 by William Grant, the owner of nearby Glenfiddich distillery. Part of the equipment used was brought in from Lagavulin and Glen Albyn. Balvenie is one of the few distilleries that still do some of their own maltings (about 15% of total requirements). The Doublewood 12yo is called such since over the period of maturation it is transferred from American ex-bourbon casks to European first-fill sherry casks, although the time spent in the sherry casks amounts to just “a further few months”.

The nose is a tad weird to start with: fruity and distinctly winey, followed by malty elements. Licorice and oranges lurk in the background but the grapey flavour is overly dominant. Not to my taste.

The palate is rather light, almost to the point of being watery. Oranges and licorice make a reappearance, with ginger and horseradish creeping in towards the end. Ugh, this is not what I look for in a single malt whisky.

The finish is of medium length and quite pleasant. Sweet and spice mingle to form a harmonious ending, which I would not have expected after the nose and the palate.

This will never be a part of my cabinet. The only thing that was reasonably satisfying was the well-balanced ending, whereas both nose and palace were disappointing.

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