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Black Bull Deluxe 12 Year Old

Average score from 8 reviews and 14 ratings 83

Black Bull Deluxe 12 Year Old

Product details

  • Brand: Black Bull
  • Bottler: Unknown
  • ABV: 50.0%
  • Age: 12 year old

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Black Bull Deluxe 12 Year Old

Nose: a bit of water helps open this up, but it still doesn't offer much. Vague, creamy malt, a touch of matchbook striker. Elusive, to say the least.

Taste: Fairly rich on the tongue, but again not well-defined. It isn't fruity, or malty, or smoky. No vanilla or honey or florals. Just a lightly sulfurous, rather generic flavour. Not exactly bad, but...

Finish: Grainy and short.

Balance: well this was a letdown, especially for the price. I took a chance on it, given the good reviews and World Whisky Award medals. There's nothing offensive about it, but it lacks any sort of character. Which is surprising considering the 50% malt content and 50% ABV. Something tells me Craigallechie is a main component here.

After yet another tasting, I would say that sherry and sulfur dominate the flavour. Not bad sulfur, however. Not pungent or sour, but rather mild like a matchbook. This is a tough whisky to figure out. It's main charm is its rich body and creamy mouthfeel. Which is actually ideal for a blend. Maybe I'm judging it more like a malt. Must be the price.


Black Bull 12 year old by Duncan Taylor surprised me big time! I expected a much lower score from this blended whisky.

Though the name implies bit more. Black Bull 12 yrs is definitely black: it is dark in every way and I like it. But it's no bull. More like a horse. It has power but not in bull kinda way.

Make sure to use some water with this blend.

Nose: Smoke fades away from the first wiff. Very sweet at the start, bit peaty with sherry, pears and sweet berries.

Taste: Thick stuff! Creamy and dark toffee dominates. Dark fruits, everything is dark. 2 drops of water made it like espresso.

Finish: Raw chocolate and roasted coffee.

Balance: Water opens up Black Bull 12 yrs nicely. Very fine blend!


I love blends. I love malts, too. But I've been quite impressed with blends. This is no exception. An easy drinking dram at 50% ABV, I definitely recommend this one if it suits your palate and predilections.

Nose: soft red fruit, raisins, toffee, and orange creamsicle. No alcohol burn despite the high ABV.

Palate: viscous and smooth, with a sweet arrival that mirrors the nose. Toffee and red fruits, vanilla, and orange sherry.

Finish: smooth and prolonged. Toffee fades into orange bitters and spice (cinnamon).

Yup. Just try it.


Black Bull! Relatively unknown to American whisky drinkers, but undoubtedly one of the best blended whiskies on the market. I would go so far as to say it is much better than any of the Johnnie Walkers (accept the Green Label) This whisky is another reason I believe Duncan Taylor is a premium bottler of great blended whisky and cannot be overlooked!

NOSE: Intense honey, rich, powerful, nutmeg, strong alcohol, grainy vanilla. I can already tell this is going to be a delicious whisky. 23/25

TASTE: Immediate, big, bold, sweet, I can't imagine a 12 yr old blend tasting so rich, strong, complex and powerful. The taste is impressive. 23/25

FINISH: Smooth, as all blends should be. The nose and taste profile matches the finish. Long, creamy, sweet, intense, oily, lingering, delicious. This is a serious blend for someone who is looking away from Johnnie Walker. Brilliant 12 year old grain/malt blend. 23/25

BALANCE: Overpowering for a blend. 50% alcohol is a lot for this, but I believe more alcohol is better for the taste profile. Excellent. but slightly unbalanced when it comes tp nose/taste comparisons- 22/25.

Never heard of it before, your review sounds great. Have to keep that bottle in mind ;)

Thanks for the review. We'll be cracking a bottle of Black Bull 12 at our next wisky gathering (Nov 3rd). Your review has me interested in trying this one.

Cheers in advance!


Nose: A funny rounded start of aerosol, very balanced. Certainly nuts, some obvious flower notes-- and a touch of earth. Slight vanilla comes out too. Rich and enjoyable.

Palate: Very oily with some salt. Some prominent toffee behind that salt, but dampened by spicy bitter oak and citrus sourness.

Finish: Malty and woody. Not overtly complex.

An okay experience for my first trial of this kind of blended whisky. Not bad, but I would call this dram average. I can best compare it to the Auchentoshan 12 (which I prefer), which also has a pleasing aroma while disappointing slightly on the palate. I find the main difference that the Black Bull has more salty/bitter/sour overtones.


I've always wanted to try this blend - reading about the flavour profile, it sounds like something I'd like. And the packaging is very cool! Indeed - I was not disappointed. This Scotch blend, produced by Duncan Taylor, is 50% malt and 50% grain, and is non-coloured, non-chill-filtered.

It clings to the glass, a dark coppery colour with golden highlights.

The nose is caramel, light Quebec maple syrup, spearmint, fresh cut grass, a hint of peat in the background, but all very robust and enveloping like an old leather armchair. There is also sherry and oak, and malt vinegar with a hint of lemon. A very rich and satisfying nose.

Off the top in the mouth, you get sweet sherry laced with caramelized brown sugar, wrapped in dark chocolate. A rough grain in the background balances out the sweet sherry and chocolate. I get rum-soaked dates. Mouthcoating but not oily.

The finish is long, deep and dark. Warming. Rich cocoa and Ethiopian coffee. This is beautifully balanced and everything harmonizes. It has an old-fashioned dark richness to it, like you are in an old leather chair by a burning fire in your oak-furnished library. The blending of this is fantastic. Absolutely one of my favourite Scotches of late. Thankfully, the Binny's in downtown Chicago has the 40 year old. Also thankfully, my ex-wife has agreed to grab me a bottle on her way back....stay tuned for that review!

Very nice and just so you know I'm jealous about the 40 yr old! Can't wait for that review!!


Nose: Sweet sherry, lemony notes and vanilla, some pears too. Quite nice actually,and full with that vanilla. the high %ABV is well integrated.

Palate: Very nice as well : Creamy, Chocolate, toffee, wood, and quite a bit of vanilla.

Finish : Cocoa , some dark chocolate, and wood.

Bottom line:

This is a nice sipping whisky. It’s not overly complex,but delivers a good combination of the malt and grain. Plenty of vanilla, and chocolate with a new finish.

I’d recommend this blend for beginners, taking their first steps in the whisky world,as a good introduction to whisky before diving into the single malt world.

Price wise, this is not a very cheap, and even more expensive than some entry level single malts. If you are not intimidated by a “Blend” , it’s worth a try.

Good work by Duncan Taylor.

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