Thursday, March 03, 2011

Malt Mission 2011 #397

Balvenie 8yo
Pure Malt Whisky (Single Malt Whisky)
70 Proof
26 2/3 Fl.oz

From today's perspective, with over 500(!) new single malt expressions launched in 2010 alone, it seems so strange to think that in the whisky boom period of the 1960s only a fraction of 1% was bottled as a single (read Dr. Whisky's blended whisky history). The likes of Macallan and Glenmorangie, leaders in the single malt category today, did not widely release their makes as single malts until 1980 and it took decades of Glen Grant (Italy), Glenlivet (Pullman railway in America) and Glenfiddich (exported as a single from 1963) to set the idea of single malts in the consciousness of the drinking public.

As far as I know, this was the first incarnation of The Balvenie released in small volumes as a single malt. For more distillery info and to see all Balvenies had on the mission, delve into the whisky blog past.


Fresh and light with a hint of depth and age. Perhaps some liquid older than 8? Chamomile, watered-down honey, hippie teas, damp wood or cardboard in there as well. Sweet white wine. Water releases a sweaty element along with coconut and hazelnut.

Moves from soft and sweet to hard and mineral, but all very weakly. Old bubble gum, baseball card cardboardy taste, coffee cake and walnuts. Ends burnt and toasty.


An interesting drop mainly for archival reasons. Although it appears that some bottle "maturation" has effected my sample, I imagine in the 1970s all the best Balvenie was ending up in Grants 12, Best Procurable, Grant's Royal, etc. In short, not something I would open to show "how much better whisky was in the old days." I'll stick with my Balvenie Signature, thank you very much.

1 comment:

lafew said...

Sam, its very reinforcing to hear what you wrote. Perhaps, I'll see you a bit earlier in Las Vegas.