A Dram A Day – Day 29
A bit of an oddity for today: here we have a Balvenie 17yo Peated Cask. How strange. Perhaps someone envisaged a peaty trend at some point in the future or simply fancied a wee experiment? Who knows, but here we have it. The side of the bottled reads ‘APPROVED’ so expect this one in the shops soon. It weighs in at 43%.
There’s a bit of a difference between this malt and other peaty drams. The whisky was re-racked (or finished) in a cask which had previously held some heavily peated Balvenie and not created through peating at the malting stage. It was then vatted with other 17yo Balvenie stocks to, I assume, add some richness. Seems like a lot of work so here’s hoping it was worth it.
By the way, the polar bear was not harmed in the taking of the photograph and neither was the photographer. The bear was asleep. The photographer was very, very much awake.
Colour: Light amber.
Nose: A musty soapiness at first with a malty hint of peat. Very warming and biscuity which gives way to a soft earthiness. A lovely mixture of heather and straw and large wafts of vanilla and sultanas and wood. A definite barn/straw note again classic of peated malts. The peating is very subtle and that’s possibly a good thing.
Palate: Sweet, malty and creamy delivery with bags of citrus (orange and lemon) and spices. Really creamy and buttery. A hint of salt comes through.
Finish: Quite short in a way but some taste lingers finishing off in a slightly bitter note.
Conclusion: Hmm, not sure here. I didn’t think this worked well at the first try and it didn’t feel cohesive but I think I’m liking it more now. I often find Balvenie too sweet for my palate and the peat here has tempered that a bit. Oh, I don’t know. Better just try for yourselves.