Now this is a first! I’ve never had a bottling for Russia before. Of course, that doesn’t change the whisky much, but it’s just a fun fact.
Anyway, this heavily sherried Balblair single cask was released two years ago and apparently it didn’t sell out quickly enough. It’s that, or the shop sent bottles back for some other reason. A couple of weeks ago they popped up in Dutch stores and they sold out quickly, even though the price tag was a hefty one (a bottle was about € 170).
I bottle shared is, since I was very interested in tasting it but didn’t want to shell out the money all by my lonesome. 60cl was sold, 10cl was kept. And it’s all gone.
The palate has more fruit with mostly oranges. Oak, toffee and tobacco leaves. Fallen autumn leaves, the brittle, rustling kind. Lots of oak and dryness. Sweet citrus fruits, some red fruits, spices and dryness.
The finish is dry and mellows quickly, with a little bit of an afterburner a few seconds later. Quite long, with mostly the fruit lingering. A very light whiff of smoke?
Well, this is great. Intense sherry that displays the mellow fruitiness of Balblair quite nicely. Also the orange flavors of the sherry work really well with the intensity of the oak. A lovely dram of which I find it surprising that it didn’t sell out in the initial market. But then again, we wouldn’t have been able to try it, would we? So thanks, Russia!
All in all, a very, very good whisky that just is a bit too ‘simple’ to go up to 90 points.
Balblair 2000-2014, Single sherry cask 1341, 597 bottles so it was a butt. 51%. Bottled for Aromatniy Mir, in Russia. Available at LMDW for € 190