Etikettarkiv: Balvenie 12 review

The Balvenie 12 YO – The Sweet Toast of American Oak

ABV: 43 %
Origin:
Speyside
Type:
Single malt
Bottles in collection:
1
Emptied bottles:
0
Impression:
3/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and oaky. At first a mix of honey, vanilla and oak sits on top of a sweet and fruity mix of oranges and malt. Black liquorice creates an outer layer surrounding everything else. It’s very mild and inviting, but the oakiness is sort of overpowering it to a certain extent. With time in the glass the oranges increase in intensity and try to break through the heavy oak. A hint of cinnamon starts to emerge from the background too. This is a decent nose, but it sort of hides the Balvenie character, which is a pity.

Mouth: It starts out with a mix of herbs and spices, but soon reverts back to being sweet and oaky. Vanilla, honey and malt are making up the main body, but the oak is like a blanket on top. The oranges and orange peel are sitting in the background. There’s a butterscotch note coming through as well, but it’s not very protruding. With time the oak increases in intensity and the whole thing is a bit astringent and dry.

Finish: It starts out with the bitter notes of orange peel and oak, but it quickly reverts back to being over oaked. It’s very ”bitey”, astringent and dry and the whole finish is nothing but oak. It’s a nice enough wood flavour, but it gets a little boring after a few sips. There are some vanilla and honey notes within the oakiness, but they are more of a integrated part and get lost in there. This is not the best Balvenie out there, but it certainly reflects what it says on the bottle very well.

Additional information
This release is a part of the ”Balvenie Story Range”. It’s first aged for 12 years in refill ex-bourbon casks and then finished in heavily charred virgin american oak casks.

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The Balvenie 12 YO – Single Barrel (6544/164)

ABV: 47.8 %
Origin:
Speyside
Type:
Single malt
Bottles in collection:
1
Emptied bottles:
0
Impression:
4/5

Tasting notes
Nose: This is sweet and citrus fruity. A big wall of honey and lemon obscures everything else from the start. After a few second it opens up and vanilla, oranges and grapefruit comes through. It’s still very sweet though. There’s a veil of menthol creating a cooling effect and a fudge note develops with time in the glass. This is not complex but really pleasant on the nose.

Mouth: It starts out thick and honey sweet. A black pepper spicyness slowly builds up on the sides while bitter lemon and orange peel comes through in the center. There’s a dustiness sitting on top and a hint of tropical fruits in the back. Just as on the nose, fudge comes through after a few seconds. It’s slightly astringent, but the oakiness isn’t noticable.

Finish: A small wave of black pepper goes by and gets replaced by a dusty vanilla and some grapefruits. The oak comes through very fast and it’s a nice fresh oakiness with a softer mellow side to it. The bitter fruit notes create a walnut nuttiness together with the oak. The late finish is driven by oak and a lemon zest. This is well put together and there’s good cask influence, but it feels a tiny bit one-dimensional.

Additional information
In 1993 Balvenie started with limited single barrel releases. This bottle is drawn from a first fill ex-bourbon barrel. The cask number is 6544 and this is bottle no. 164 out of a maximum of 300 bottles.