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Balvenie 21 Year Old Port Wood Finish

Good Evening, Sir.

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@McGrainReview by @McGrain

28th Sep 2012


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

This is very, very good. Very complex it rewards, ahem, repeat visits and although it's outside the price range I love to drink in, I know i'll have another one of these before too long. Moreishness born of sheer quality.

Nose: A bakery. Fig rolls and mince pies, raisins. Cut apples. The port puts me in mind of sherry, then almost brandy. In spite of all this it remains subtle and seductive rather than overwhelming or challenging. The warmth in the experience begins here also. Enchanting.

Mouth: So smooth, uncut apples now with hints of marzipan. See the progression from the nose? Such wonderful cohesion. Some spice. A hint of wood and a very slightly soured/burnt note that maybe drags this whisky down to great, from the heights of near-perfetion. Almonds, nuttiness a little more insistent as the finish approaches.

After: Complex and delicate. Almost underwhelming but rewards concentration. Warm, exquisitely polite, nuts lengthen until the very last moment. The burnt note returns but has a more pleasant introduction. Seems to fall off quickly but actually lingers just out of sight, a ghost of a finish complimenting perfectly the old-school butler of a whisky.

In case i haven't been clear enough, I love it. I think perhaps this is a little under-rated in the wider world and I love that Whisky Connosr rates it so highly. Perhaps my favourite "delicate" whisky.

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