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Is anyone Else Disappointed by Balvenie 10yo??

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Is anyone Else Disappointed by Balvenie 10yo??

Postby patrick dicaprio » Sun Jan 23, 2005 2:14 am

According to most tasting notes i have read this is a great whisky. SO it was with great anticipation that I opened a fresh bottle to add it to my new tasting notes, which I will post here:

Distillery: Balvenie Score: 7
Expression: 10 yo Date:

Nose: Definite aroma of honey and sweetness, but not much else. The honey is really evident after a few minutes when it opens up well.
Palate: Slightly tingly and sweet but short. The sweetness is followed by some spiciness.
Finish: Short and very sweet almost like syrup
Comments: Fair and thats all. I wanted to like it more, and it is a fine example of a sweet malt, but it is dominated by honey sweeteness that dulls the balance. I am a minority of one apparently.

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Balvenie 10

Postby williammackinnon » Sun Jan 23, 2005 2:49 am

Haven't tried the 10 YEAR OLD Balvenie, but was HUGELY disappointed with the 12 YEAR OLD Doublewood. I suppose that's one small downside to reading about whisky, you develop expectations that some whiskies don't live up to.
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Postby islayjunkie » Sun Jan 23, 2005 6:29 am

Same here... I simply forgot about the 12yo until now. An "average" whisky... not good, not bad, not my style.
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Postby Frodo » Sun Jan 23, 2005 6:47 am

I guess for me, the critical issue is one of value. Compared to other 10yr olds like Ardbeg, Longrow, or Talisker, I'd be disappointed. But taking into account what you pay for it (20% less than 12yr Highland Park over here) I think it's a nice dram.

If my choice is between several drams at a similar price point such as Aberlour 10yr, Glenfiddich 12yr, Glenlivet 12yr or the 10yr old Balvinnie, I'd know in a heartbeat what I'd take. :)

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Postby islayjunkie » Sun Jan 23, 2005 7:14 am

Frodo wrote:If my choice is between several drams at a similar price point such as Aberlour 10yr, Glenfiddich 12yr, Glenlivet 12yr or the 10yr old Balvinnie, I'd know in a heartbeat what I'd take. :)


You have a point here however for a little more money what would you prefer?

Laphroaig 10yo is going for $29.99 USD... it's not my favorite but for the price it's the best I've had followed by $42.99 Ardbeg 10yo and $49.99 Clynelish 14yo.

I would love any more recommendations in this price range ;)
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Postby Frodo » Sun Jan 23, 2005 8:19 am

Yeah, I do like the Ardbeg 10 and the couple of times I've tried Clynelish (haven't had the 14yr OB though). The problem for me is that these are C$75 and C$85 respectivly at the LCBO, compared to C$40 for the 10yr Balvinnie.

Your point about the 10yr Laphroig is well taken (C$50 at the LCBO) but I just can't get into this one. Too medicinal for me. BTW at this price point, I'd recommend the Dun Bheagan 8yr old Islay. I'm not so sure what's in it although I've heard Laga or Bowmore. At your other price point, I'm not sure what I can add. I do like Ardbeg 10 and respect Clynelish. Although I'm not usually a big fan of sherried malts, I'm chewing over buying a bottle of Auchantoshan Tripplewood. I like having two open bottles of dissimilar malts that can offer comtrast. I only have one sherried malt at home, so I'm thinking about it. Lucky me, the LCBO has that tasting tower...

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Postby Frodo » Sun Jan 23, 2005 8:24 am

islayjunkie wrote:I would love any more recommendations in this price range ;)


To be honest, at the C$40 mark, I usually buy Irish (Redbrest or Jameson 12) or Bourbon - say, Elmer T. Lee, or Woodford Reserve.

I guess if it came down to Scotch for about C$45, I'd buy either Dun Bheagan 8yr Islay, Balvinnie 10yr or Glenmorangie 10yr. I would recommend JW Black to others, but I just can't get into it. Not because it's a blend, but it's flavour profile is just not as... beligerent (for lack of a better word) as I would like.

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Postby Deactivated Member » Sun Jan 23, 2005 12:49 pm

I do like The Balvenie quite a lot, ofcourse exceptions left aside. The 10Y old is quite nice and I like the honey notes in it. The 21Y old Portwood and the 25Y old Single Cask: that's another matter (yummo scrummo)...

Cheers,

Erik
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Postby Tom » Sun Jan 23, 2005 1:04 pm

Sorry, no i never been dissapointed with the Balvenie 10, i find for that age only the Ardbeg can tip on it. Also the 12 has more complexity and the sherry works out great IMO with the honey. Only the 15 is by times a bit dissapointing, but that one changes all the time.
you are probably right when you say that after reading all the good comments you were expecting heaven.
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Postby Admiral » Sun Jan 23, 2005 1:18 pm

I would agree with the general consensus that Balvenie is a very good malt, but not a spectacular one.

It is true that some writings and hearsay tend to be quite glowing, and I can understand you going in with some sort of "special" expectation.

I think one of the problems for Balvenie is that it comes from the same stable as Glenfiddich. There's a mentality out there that goes something along the lines of, "Well, we know Glenfiddich is produced for the masses, but you ought to try Balvenie.....that's where they really try to make good whisky".

I tried the 15yo single barrel recently, and I couldn't help but think, yes, here's another good speysider. But it didn't make the earth move.

Cheers,
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Postby hpulley » Sun Jan 23, 2005 2:33 pm

The 15yo is my current favorite, but it isn't one I keep around or go out of my way to acquire. The 12yo is good, but gives me a headache and the 10yo I've always found to be, "uh?"

I must say, overall, that speysiders have difficulting making their way onto my whisky shelves. I have one Craigellachie at the moment and a Macduff (Glen Deveron) that may or may not be considered speyside or east highland. That's it for the spey valley for me. I know some consider the spey valley brighter than the midlands but not me.

Harry
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Postby Lawrence » Sun Jan 23, 2005 6:15 pm

I've always managed to judge Balvenie on its own merits but I' ve never been that impressed by it. Perhaps its just another malt for fillings?
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Postby Admiral » Mon Jan 24, 2005 3:32 am

Isn't that what Kininvie is for? :wink: :)
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Jan 24, 2005 9:39 am

Thje Balvenie 10 is an archetype to me--something I will return to now and again, not the most complex malt, but a simple pleasure. The 12 is a little deeper. I haven't had a 15 yet that I didn't think was wonderful. It's better than the 25, in my opinion, and it's the single barrel bottling that causes me to wonder why distilleries waste so much time and effort with vatting.
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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Jan 24, 2005 10:01 am

People should actualy try the vintages from The Balvenie, then they will talk otherwise.... :)

Cheers,

Erik
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Postby Lawrence » Mon Jan 24, 2005 5:56 pm

Fair enough but that wasn't the question..... :D
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Postby robs42 » Mon Jan 24, 2005 11:44 pm

As far as the 10yo goes, I found a litre bottle for £18 and I'm really not complaining - it has a yeasty background on the nose but the honey sweetness makes it a pleasant experience, if not outstanding.

On a related issue, the Balvenie website is now offering members 10cl samples from a specially selected cask for £10 (I'm not sure whether they ship abroad). The first 100 samples are from a first fill bourbon, just under 14yo, but they'll pick another cask when they sell out. Personally, I think this is a very good idea which other disilleries should take note of. It just helps us learn more about individual distilleries without having to spend too much.
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Postby Lawrence » Tue Jan 25, 2005 2:38 am

It sounds interesting but then if it's stunning we'll want more and then there won't be any. :?
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Postby Deactivated Member » Tue Jan 25, 2005 4:16 am

Then let's resolve not to want any so there will be plenty to go around. :shock: Lawrence! You're killin' me! :shock:
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Postby Lawrence » Tue Jan 25, 2005 4:48 am

OK, you first 8) I'll be shopping.......
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