There will be those still mourning the loss of the bourbon-matured 15 Year Old Single Barrel officially discontinued, but we still have a few bottles left. Well, cheer up, because we have good news: Our sample was from butt number — obviously, each cask is different, so flavours will vary, but note that this is an ongoing release, not a limited edition. So, how does this new sherrified 15YO compare to its younger brother?
While its sibling distillery wins the popularity contest, The Balvenie is not to be overlooked. It means that the individual characteristics which arise in a given barrel are present only in the or so bottles which are filled from that cask. This means that The Balvenie you drink now could be vastly different from the bottle you buy next year, or even from the bottle you purchase across the street on the same day!
The cask number, cask fill date, bottling date, and bottle number are printed on the label.
This explains the vastly different tasting notes you might find from tasters of this Scotch. A single tasting event could be run simply from bottles of The Balvenie from different bottling runs!
Honey and peach, buttery baked goods, angel food cake, white port wine, honeysuckle and freshly-cut flowers. Rich with honey and marzipan, low-burn. Clear and unmuddied heather at the beginning, middle, and end. Like liquid candy, but not cloyingly so.
Delicate and floral on the attack, growing more nutty and with darker cooked-fruit flavors… like peach pie.
Finish is short, but with a lingering ghost of lilac and yet more honey. This dram makes me want to be a bee in the next life. Adding a dash of water to the glass causes it to open up like a flower. Literally, perfumey notes of wildflowers, clover, lilac, rosemary blossom, and peach blossom rush out of the glass.
With water, the floral notes persist into the taste, overshadowing some of the sweeter baked-good flavors.
Try Blended Scotch. This is a bit of a cheat but if you’re new to scotch, consider a blend rather than single malt. Blends are far cheaper and you can get a great blend for less than a mediocre single malt. This 12 year-old expression from The Balvenie is aged in first- or second-fill bourbon casks, with up to a further year in first-fill oloroso sherry casks. The Balvenie Single Barrel Sherry Cask 15 Year Old Nose: Rich aromas of candied fruit and mixed peel, slight creaminess, with notes of almonds, Christmas cake and Toffifee, countered with some soft fruits – green apple and pear.
This is a Scotch that should be tasted both with, and without water, as its character changes dramatically. This one is a marvel, and because of the Single-Barrel style, you can come back year after year to discover ever different tastes and scents.
About The Distillery Built by the Grant family in as a sister distillery to next-door Glenfiddich, The Balvenie still remains in the ownership of the family. Unusual for a distillery of this size, Balvenie still operates its small floor maltings, grows some of its own barley, and has an on-site cooperage.
It now has eight stills, which some think are the key to its nutty, honeyed style — they are fat and have short necks.
The Balvenie 15 year Single Barrel Cask The Balvenie distillery is a Speyside single malt Scotch whisky distillery in Dufftown, Scotland, owned by William Grant & Sons. The Oak Barrel has the finest selection of Boutique and Organic Wine, Malt Whisky, Craft Beer and Cider in Sydney as well as Wine and Spirit Education.
The Macallan distillery is a single malt Scotch whisky distillery in Craigellachie, Moray. The Macallan Distillers Ltd, is a wholly owned subsidiary of the Edrington Group which purchased the brand from Highland Distillers in Laphroaig.
Laphroaig distillery is an Islay single malt Scotch whisky distillery. Located at the head of Loch Laphroaig on the south coast of Islay, Laphroaig.
The Balvenie Single Barrel 15 Year Old Sherry Cask (Credit: Kurt Maitland) This Balvenie expression is matured for at least 15 years in a European oak sherry butt, and not to be confused with The Balvenie’s standard Single Barrel 15 Year Old, which are aged in ex-bourbon barrels rather than former sherry butts.
Our mission at the Oak Stave is simple: to serve the hard-working men and women of our community the way that they deserve to be served. Matured exclusively in a single European oak sherry butt for at least 15 years, this unique Speyside Single Malt from The Balvenie has been drawn from a single cask of a single distillation.
The nose offers a combination of elegant oak and subtle spices.