The Balvenie 40 Year Old Single Malt Scotch: So as you may have read from our previous tasting notes, we got around to sampling a lot of Balvenie scotch and you can read the notes on The Balvenie Sherry Cask 15 year-old Single Barrel Scotch and Traditional Oak 25 year-old Single Barrel Scotch, which could probably go down as the prelude to this sublime 40-year-old scotch. And I say sublime because it surprised me somewhat! To create The Balvenie Forty, Malt Master David Stewart has skilfully married together small amounts of The Balvenie matured in 4 refill hogsheads and 3 sherry butts that have lain in the Balvenie warehouses for at least forty years.
On the nose: you’ll experience notes of sandalwood and cedar wood, followed by a warm waft of sweet mixed fruits. This is closely followed by notes of aniseed, fennel seeds and a small suggestion of notes of a floral nature. After a couple of swirls notes of peaches, pineapple and vanilla start to emerge, with a hint of cinnamon and strangely enough some characteristics of Suntory Yamazaki. On the palate: those sweet notes of mixed fruits will hit you, followed by cedar wood. Those notes of vanilla will start to filter through, with a distinct flavour, sherry! There is a hint of those pineapple notes, followed by spicy cinnamon, oak and green tea. The finish: is medium, sweet, with lingering oak.
The verdict: Now, I’ve tasted seriously old scotch before but unfortunately it hasn’t always been the best of experiences. Whisky aged for this period of time tend to take on too much character of the oak in which it has been aged. However, this Balvenie 40yo has the best blend of youth and maturity! It is so well-balanced and keeps offering more notes just as often as you keep nosing and sipping it. A drop that didn’t need any water – though if you do need to then only add a very small amount. For me, I found when I left it for a short amount of time to sit in the glass between nosing and tasting – this yielded the best results notes wise.
The Balvenie 40 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky can be found in well stocked whisky shops and online for approximately £3000
For more information on the 40 Year Old Single Malt Scotch, visit the official Balvenie website.