Balblair 1996-2018, 54.4% – OB for La Maison du Whisky

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The image from the website, which isn’t the actual bottle.

I love Balblair. I liked them before, but ever since I visited them in 2013, I really loved them. However, I somehow barely ever buy a bottle. Some, but not a lot. Which I tried to remedy a little bit with a sample from this heavily sherried unit bottled for La Maison du Whisky.

LMdW, as it is known, is not a cheap shop. They’re in Paris, which is not a cheap city, which is a bit of an excuse. However, when they bring out a private bottling, you know you’re going to pay for it. Having said that, they do generally bottle some awesome quality hooch.

So, a heavily sherried Balblair from 1996 with 21 or 22 years of aging to it. I was enthusiastic about it right away. I’m not entirely sure what I paid for the sample, but it is still available for 185 euros, which I think is a fairly okay price for this kind of whisky.

187202-big

Now this has some color to it!

Sniff:
Lots of sweet sherry and coarse oak. Cigars, wood spices, clove and cinnamon. Some slight bitterness and some dried plums and coffee.

Sip:
A lot of pepper and sharpness. Bitter oak and sherry. Dried plums, coffee, with a lot of spice. Cinnamon, clove, pink peppercorns. Very intense.

Swallow:
Dry and surprisingly spicy. Full on on the cigars and oak. Some earthiness, with cinnamon, clove and dark rye bread.

Having tried this whisky over a couple of sittings, I can confirm that the 185 euros for it is justified. Even though I don’t want to spend any money right now, I am considering clicking the buy button. I won’t, but if you’re in the game of spending this kind of money on whisky, this is not a bad buy at all.

Highly recommended!

91/100

Balblair 1996-2018, 1st fill Spanish Oak Butt Finish, cask 022, 54.4%, OB for La Maison du Whisky. Available for € 185

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About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm a web developer at Emakina. I'm highly interested in booze, with a focus on whisk(e)y. I like to listen to loads of music and read quite some books. I'm married to Anneke, have a daughter Ot, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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