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Balvenie 12 Year Old DoubleWood

Smoked Honey!

0 375

@SquidgyAshReview by @SquidgyAsh

28th Aug 2013


Balvenie 12 Year Old DoubleWood
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

I'm a huge fan of Balvenie, with their 21 year old Portwood finished whisky being one of my top favorite Speysides. Even more after my recent distillery visit where I had the opportunity to try a 39 year old whisky from 1974, straight from the cask which was an epic experience in and of itself, well to say that it deepened my loving for this distillery would be an understatement.

I recently had the chance to sample their entry level Balvenie 12 year old Doublewood, which many of my friends have raved about for months, if not years. It's a whisky that I myself always walk past in the bottle shops as I'm personally more drawn to the cask strength whiskies, with big bold flavors, but when this chance came along to sample it, I couldn't pass it up.

Into my trusty glencairn it goes and let's see what we can see.

Nose: the first thing that hits me is smoke, very nice soft sweet smoke, then oranges, then honey and vanilla with some further citrus following it up (mandarins?)

Definitely a soft Speyside feel to the aroma and it makes me interested in how the palate will shape up.

Taste: Sweet, way too sweet for me, honey, lots of honey, oranges and citrus, vanilla, faint hint of smoke, very faint.

And a short finish, very sweet with the honey leading center charge and the vanilla following it all up.

This would likely be a very good entry level whisky for most people, being quite smooth and sweet with the honey and vanilla and the faint hint of smoke provides some interest to those who are not familiar with the Speyside's smokier cousins in the Highlands, however personally for me it's too sweet and the 40% abv just doesn't provide the mouthfeel that I'm looking for.

But that being said if you're looking to start exploring whiskies this whisky would likely be a good place to start and at around $75 AUS a bottle you won't break the bank purchasing a bottle.

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Victor commented

@Squidgy, you KNOW that you were right to walk past the Doublewood. Your 75 review score confirms that. There is a lot of batch variation with Doublewood. I had a 'machts nichts' bottle of Doublewood given to me (like you, a 75 scorer)...then when the next one was given to me I gave it away...and it was MUCH BETTER (like 87). Kicked myself a bit. But my sister was a worthy recipient of the better bottle and I can still drink from it.

Founders Reserve 10 yo, that's the young Balvenie which has my heart.

10 years ago 0

Nozinan commented

Have you tried any of the 15 year old single casks? I tried cask 1976 (I bought a bottle for my uncle). It was in my earlier newbie days but I really liked it so I went back to the store and found another of the same cask. It now gathers dust waiting for one day....maybe soon, and I don't have a lot of bourbon matured stuff open.

I tried another one at a party but it was loud, the glass was wrong...disaster. I don't blame the bottle, just the environment. That one was definitely nature, not nurture.

10 years ago 0

SquidgyAsh commented

@Victor, thanks for the info! As soon as I posted this review on Facebook I heard that there was quite a bit of batch variation on the Double Wood with some people loving that and some people not. Never got a chance to try the Founder's Reserve though, would love to!

@Nozinan As soon as I posted this on Facebook that's what I heard, try the 15 year old single batch, although and this is just hearsay because I can't remember if it's the 15 yr old or the 17 yr old, but one of these is being discontinued in the near future so I'll have to get a sample of the 15 yr old before too long! Thanks for the suggestion!

10 years ago 0