It’s the Monday before Thanksgiving and although I’m not entirely certain I’ve acquired all the ingredients I need for our Thursday meal, I am certain about the fact that the whisky I am going to talk about today, is absolutely fantastic.
My first introduction to this brand was with their Balvenie PortWood 21 year-old. Balvenie is a Speyside whisky and the distillery is located in Dufftown, Scotland. William Grant & Sons built the distillery in 1892 and still owns it to this very today. To ensure the quality of their product, they not only grow their own barley, but they also still use the traditional malting floor process.
This 17 year-old Balvenie is first matured in American oak barrels and it is then transferred to European oak sherry casks to finish maturing, hence the DoubleWood name. Although the 17 year-old is very closely related to the 12 year-old DoubleWood, the extra years in maturation and deeper tasting notes does set them apart.
Nose: sweet, vanilla and oak
Palate: spices, vanilla, almonds and cinnamon
Finish: very smooth, sweet and spicy
Balvenie 17 is absolutely fantastic! So much so, that I will say that I prefer the 17 year-old to the 21 year-old. It is smooth, complex and very well balanced. It is also a bit more affordable than the 21 year-old.
Here is the numbers breakdown, a bottle of the 21 year-old ranges $175-$240, while the 17 year-old goes for around $125. Yes it is still a very stiff price, but if you were looking to chose between one or the other I’d recommend the 17 year-old, not only because of the price difference but also because of the difference in taste. The notes in the 17 year-old are so much richer and have a significant amount of depth to them. I highly recommend trying.
PS: Wishing you all a very happy and safe Thanksgiving!
Note: The contents on my blog are solely my opinion. To me every palate is different! Although I may or may not like a product, I always recommend for people to try it and make up their own minds.