The next Balvenie on the table is the older brother of the 12yo we did earlier. This time it’s:

  • The Balvenie 15yo Single Barrel (47.8%), cask no. 3811

This bottle is not sold anymore and replaced by a 15yo Single Barrel Sherry Cask version which makes sense with the 12yo Single Barrel being that good!

The Balvenie Single Barrel is a 15 year old single malt which is drawn from a single traditional oak whisky cask of a single distillation. Whilst each cask is subtly different, The Balvenie Malt Master selects only those casks which have the essential characteristics of The Balvenie Single Barrel, particularly honey, vanilla and oaky notes. Each bottling forms a limited edition of no more than 350 hand-numbered bottles – so each bottle is unique and unrepeatable.

Color

Yellow gold

Nose

Fruity, banana, honey, little spice (pepper, hints of vanilla), some roasted notes (caramel). Sweet candy. Could have been a bit more exciting/complex in my view.

Taste

Nice sweet attack with ripe fruits, followed by some heat and spicy notes (pepper, nutmeg) in the middle. Mouthwarming in the middle but it has exactly the right heat. Superb balance!

Nice slow legs in the glass giving it a nice thick body/texture.

Finish

Finish is sweet again (creamy caramel) and long.

Comments

Amazing dynamics and complexity in the taste. Clearly recognizable casktype and again a typical Balvenie dram.

Very comparable to the new 12yo Single Barrel edition although I expected a bit more from this one if compared to the 12yo.

Score = 90/100 (could have been 1 point higher if nose was more complex)

If I have to count in the price then the 12yo easily tops this 15yo. But maybe that’s why the 12yo is the new offering and the 15yo has been discontinued (replaced by a 15yo sherry offering).

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