Balblair 9, 2012-2021, Bourbon Barrel, 58.7% – Whiskybase

With another 10,000 bottles on the wall, as they call it, at Whiskybase, another bottling had to be released. Of course, by now the 200k bottling has been out as well, as it the 210k one.

So yes, another reasonable late review, but here we go anyway! I visited Balblair distillery last month and am doing a write up for Best of Wines, much like I did with Lindores Abbey Distillery earlier this year. The short summary is: great distillery to visit!

Image from Whiskybase

Sniff:
There’s a white oak base with hints of coconut, straw, barley and oak. Some yellow fruits too, but initially it comes off as a bit more fruit-cake like. After half a minute or so, that note disappears and there’s just bourbon cask left. Pears, white grapes, coconut husks and some grist too. It’s pretty dry.

Sip:
The palate starts light, but the heat of the alcohol kicks in in your cheeks as soon as it gets there. Slowly it envelops your entire mouth. The whisky is dry, with far less fruity notes than on the nose. There’s some dried apple, but it’s mostly a bit of oak and lots of straw and barley. Some more green notes too, slightly mossy even.

Swallow:
The finish leaves a bit of a thick coating, but also a lot of heat and dry bite. It’s not a very long after taste, but there’s some baked apple, pear and toasted oak. Coconut husk and milled barley again.

Nice, but rather hot. A few years more in wood might have worked wonders for a dram like this. It’s far from a bad whisky, but I imagine what Balblair is capable of with more time.

85/100

Of course this sold out quickly, but there are some bottles available in the Marketplace at the time of writing, at more or less the same price as it initially went for.

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About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm very interested in booze, with a focus on whisky. I like to listen to loads of music and play lots of Magic: the Gathering, and board games too. I'm married to Anneke, have two daughters Ot and Cato, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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