.the balvenie – cask sample – #17703

In October 2014 we were touring the Speyside area with some friends, and for obvious reasons we had booked a tour at the Balvenie distillery. After an awesome tour there was the option to sample our own 20cl bottle in the warehouse straight from a second fill ex-Bourbon, a first fill ex-Bourbon cask and / or an ex-Sherry butt. That is exactly what most of us did, prior to the fantastic tasting in the visitor’s centre of their core range. It turns out that if you are a member of Warehouse 24, you get to sample another bottle, that will be added to the tasting.

.greedy bastards

41.9% abv, €not for sale, single malt, non-chill filtered, natural colour, cask strength, single cask, cask sample


Nose: sweet, vanilla, a hint of wood, fruit, Granny Smith’s apples, sweet dark chocolate, red fruit, fresh berries, red berries, fresh cranberries, raspberries, strawberries, warm cherries, sour candy (love)
Palate: sweet, vanilla, semi-dry, creamy mouth feel, ripe fruit, apples, pears, red fruit, fresh red berries, raspberries, strawberries, dark chocolate
Finish: warm, long, sweet, warm dark chocolate sauce, warm cherries,
Mark: +++++ 
Conclusion: Layer after layer of chocolate niceties, red fruit delight and other fresh fruits keep on coming. I would like to own a full bottle of this, but am afraid it will be impossible to obtain. Furthermore, the cask shall be empty by now. All the more reason to return to the Balvenie and have a look at the replacement cask. Fantastic stuff, and – along with the memories of the trip, it may be one of the best drams I have ever had to date, although I will keep on trying.
More info: please note that it is absolutely okay to photograph in the Balvenie warehouses and they do allow to bring a miniature of the drawn sample outside of the distillery premises. Or something like that. We were unable to understand the tourguide at this point, she could have meant the exact opposite…

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