Category Archives: Balvenie

Balvenie 14-year-old ‘Caribbean Cask’

Bought: Waitrose 6th August, 2014

Ratings:
84.85/100 – Whiskybase (from 29 member ratings)
7/10 – Whisky Wednesday – his review on YouTube (January 2013)

Given that I’m a Speyside fan and the house style for Balvenie is “medium to full bodied, rich, sweet, malty and spicy” I’m always on the lookout for a bargain from the Balvenie distillery because it ticks all the boxes. I must confess though that I was a bit disappointed with the Balvenie 15-year-old Single Cask I tried in a bar in July. But I’ve always enjoyed the Doublewood, and anything with the word ‘Caribbean’ in it has a touch of the exotic about it. I also feel compelled to drink it whilst dressed as a pirate and shouting “YARRR!” with every swig (but not during or I’ll choke!). I’m sure, after rum, this is Captain Jack’s tipple of choice.

I was about to include a rating from Malt Maniacs, since this Balvenie isn’t mentioned in the Whisky Bible, until I remembered about Whiskybase. There was only one user rating on Malt Maniacs but 29 on Whiskybase, which gives a broader opinion of this dram. Whiskybase also includes tasting notes and comments by users which could prove useful. See what you think.

Like Whiskybase, I’ve not used Whisky Wednesday before, but Jo, the man behind the glass, does some excellent whisky reviews. Well worth a watch to give an insight into this delicious dram.

Balvenie Caribbean Cask 14yo 70cl

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Balvenie ‘Signature’ 12-year-old (batch 5)

Bought – Morrisons, 22nd May, 2014

Ratings:
92/100 – Whisky Bible 2013 (batch 4)
85/100 – Ralfy, of www.ralfy.com
Review: – Ralfy – Balvenie 12yo Signature (batch 2) – YouTube

Morrisons had this on sale and it was only when I checked the Whisky Bible 2014 that I discovered why – it wasn’t there! It’s been discontinued. I had to go back to the 2013 bible to get some facts and figures. I have batch 5, Ralfy reviewed batch 2 in 2009, and the 2013 bible includes batches 1, 3 and 4 with the following scores:

–         93/100 – Batch 1
–         89/100 – Batch 3
–         92/100 – Batch 4

As much as Jim Murray (author of the Whisky Bible) loves this Balvenie, his consistent complaint across all the batches is the lack of strength. This single malt has everything else except it’s only 40%. Ralfy agrees saying it promises so much but there’s a weakness on delivery due to the lack of alcohol. He suggests 46%. At 40% Rafly recommends little or no water.

With all this talk of a Balvenie whisky being amazing if it was 46% or more, it looks like the 15yo ‘Single Barrel’ is next on my shopping list. At 47.8% Ralfy scores it at 91/100, which is very high from him. It sounds like the Signature on steroids, or at least with the added oomph to make it amazing. Nevertheless I’m looking forward to trying the Signature, which promises to be extremely good.

July 2014 Update – I tried the 15yo ‘Single Barrel’ and I wasn’t impressed, so that’s off the shopping list. In the same tasting I tried the Springbank 10yo which was amazing, and blew the Balvenie out of the water!

Balvenie Signature 12yo 70cl

Balvenie ‘Doublewood’ 12-year-old

Bought – Tesco, 30th July 2013

Ratings:
80.5/100 – Whisky Bible 2013
83/100 – Ralfy, of www.ralfy.com
Review: – Ralfy – Balvenie Doublewood – YouTube

Balvenie Doublewood 12yo 20cl