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Issue 119 - Ask the expert

Whisky Magazine Issue 119
April 2014

 

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Ask the expert

I am a great fan of single malt Scotch
whisky and I have tried to visit every distillery
in Scotland. My passion comes from a visit to Bowmore distillery when I met Jim McEwan. Since that time, I have visited a lot of distilleries, and attended every whisky school in Scotland. I have even worked in a few distilleries on a voluntarily basis. Back in March, I gave a Balvenie nosing and tasting.
My question is this: I have two bottlings from one cask, a Signatory 1974 and a Dun
Eideann. I can find nothing about this bottling. Can you tell me who the owners of Dun Eideann are?
Ronald Bilj, The Netherlands

The simple explanation is that Dun Eideann is a label owned by Signatory. The Dun Eideann Balvenie 1974 was a 15 Years Old bottling released by Signatory in 1990 at a strength of 43%. Signatory Cask Strength Balvenie 1974 was a 15 Years Old release bottled at 57.1% but there were 1,300 bottles from a number of casks.
Independent bottlings of The Balvenie are staggeringly rare. I can find only five independent bottles of Balvenie sold at live auction in 2013 in the Whisky Magazine Index records. Interestingly, there amongst them, are the two bottles in question. McTear's, Glasgow sold the Signatory Cask Strength Balvenie 1974 for £160 last April whilst Tennant's Auctioneers in Yorkshire sold a bottle of the Dun Eideann Balvenie 1974 for the same price in May. Michael Jackson reviewed a Signatory bottling of Balvenie 1974 43% in his Malt Whisky Companion (2nd edition, 1991)...

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