Liquid Gold Award - 2014
Jim Murray's Whisky Bible
Insider knowledge: Ballantine's Finest whisky is named whisky by virtue of the fact it's from Scotland. If distilled in America the spelling would be Ballantine's Finest whiskey, as opposed to whisky.
Nose: Expressive, crisp barley sugars. Touch of wood smoke, toffee.
Palate: Rich and sweet. Barley and caramel, very gentle peat.
Finish: Soft and sweet, fudge.
Disappointed initially. Bland and light. Then it or my taste-buds opened up revealing complexity, subtlety, balance. When I(irresponsibly) went on to drink to that point where almost any whisky tastes good- it became delicious- The poor man's Dalwhinnie 15. Perfect for approaching that point where you'd be wasting your best whisky if you continued. Excellent value, a really enjoyable blend.
5th July 2014
I drink mainly Speyside single malts and have not been very impressed at all with most blended whiskys. I find Jameson fair and Johnnie Walker Black Label poor. But Ballantines Finest is one of the finest sipping whiskys I've ever come across. I'd put it up there with single malts such as Bushmills 16 yo and even the Macallan 10. Great with just a little water.
29th June 2014
I've been purchasing your 1.75ltr for years. I love Ballantine's but don't like the cap on that bottle. Now that you took the handle off, I find that small or arthritic hands can't hold on to the bottle with one hand. Some people only have one!!! Thanks for listening.
27th June 2014
I've been drinking scotch since i started drinking,i mostly drank Black Label but now i drink this more often as the taste is smoother than many expensive scotch whisky's
26th June 2014
со льдом и в коктейли потянет
2nd May 2014
I may not know much, but I know what I like, and I like this blend. I much prefer it over the famous grouse. Whiskey bible gave it a 96 in 2011-2012 making it blend of the year, beating out walker black. Give it a try for the price you can't go wrong.
19th April 2014
Beyond criticism I should have thought. Then again, perhaps the practice of imbibing horse urine is not the best preparation for tasting whisky? Still, each to his own ......
30th March 2014
horse piss taste better than this shit
19th March 2014
Nose is a little over-alcoholic but fortunately doesn't taste that much. Sweet, mild, pleasantly aromatic on the palate if not complex. Clean aftertaste. Good for back-from-work refreshment.
24th February 2014
Been drinking this for donkeys years, tried 100's of the others while travelling world and UK. Glenfiddich, Grouse etc, but always come back to mu favorite Ballantines, It does it for me and always will. Currently have 4 litres which I brought back from Spain.
25th January 2014
I've only recently stopped being an unintending single malt snob so know even less about blends than I do about singles, however I think this is very ordinary. Unremarkable nose (except, perhaps, the caramel colouring?), peppery on the palate (OK, it's Scotch but this isn't the challenge of a childish nip pinched from dad's old fashioned blend when you he wasn't looking, this just feels a little rough) and in the finish there's the clunking colouring again (remember those bitter, caramel topped, creme-caramel desserts your mum used to make in a teacup?). I've yet to have an undrinkable dram but in my opinion this merits only a "Meh".
20th January 2014
Sweet, smooth and classy. No off notes. If I wanted to be unkind I could say it is a little dull, but I do rather like this so I wont say that :-)
5th January 2014
29th December 2013
Sweet and sort of bland. Not an entirely bad tipple and certainly better than the notorious Johnnie Walker Red Label, but others in that price range are much better (Teachers, Black Bottle come to mind). If you're willing to pay more but want to stay in the Ballantine's range, the 12 year old blend is a huge improvement over this.
7th October 2013
Its so sexy and fine just like man
17th September 2013
I've finally settled on Ballantine's as my evening tipple when I'm not in the mood to drink the expensive stuff. It's obviously not up there with the deluxe blends, but IMO it's a better whiskey than its competitors. Definitely worth a try if you don't know it.
23rd July 2013
19th July 2013
I'm a whisky noob, but from my limited experience - it tastes mild, sweet and alcoholic, I wouldn't mind more tannin/smoke taste. I would agree with other reviewers who described it as - simple. Nothing wrong with that though, it's like Coca Cola, not a special thing, but everyone can enjoy it.
7th June 2013
Juicy and fresh. A bit like a weird barely legal marriage between a Mr Jack Daniels and a young Scottish wench.
30th May 2013
Everyone has different tastes but I recommend you ignore any negative reviews as you will not find a better blend for the money. Fantastic whisky.
18th April 2013
At this price it can't be beat! Delicious!
2nd March 2013
I have tasted a whole variety of Scotch Whiskeys, but everyday in and out Ballantines everyday is way above the market.
28th February 2013
I was not very impressed with this. I know you can't expect too much from a blend at this price range but given the fact that it's can be £20+ in some places I was expecting something slightly more interesting than the likes of Teachers and Bells but (in my opinion) it isn't. It is very smooth and well balanced but it has a lot of that sort of rubbery flavour that you tend find in cheap blends and it has a slightly bitter finish. It's very similar to Whyte & Mackay Special which is my least favourite of the main 5 cheap blends so I don't think it's one I'll be buying again.
30th January 2013
First impression was a little rough, a little woody, a little earthy, dominated by smokey tones. Added some water and some strong fruity notes escaped - blackberries? But still remains dry with a hint of caramel. Wouldn't recommend for those not familiar with whisky, but it you like slightly harsher taste of the peat and smoke then try it.
21st December 2012
I have A botle more than 40 years old
28th February 2012
One of my favorites.Nice and sweet taste and ofcourse value for money.
1st February 2012
A bit too sweetish. I find the taste to be a bit too simple. Might be good option for "non-whisky" guests maybe. But really can't even compare it with Laphroaig.
11th September 2011
For the price point I don't know how much better you could do. It is really approachable, really easy on peat and smoke. A middle ground whiskey that everyone could enjoy if offered a glass.
31st August 2011
This is the one i was drinking on my recent holiday.It is included in the all inclusive deal at the hotel.I drank it as a chaser along with a half of San Miguel beer.I had a very good holiday thank you.The bar staff were very very generous with the measures.it took six sips to finish just one drink.Excellent drink.
11th August 2011
This is the one which makes you feel good.
19th May 2011
If you are looking for a complete whisky - this is it. Consistent and robust, rich in aroma and nose. Balanced with just the right amount of peat and gentle smokiness, this blend has stood the test of time as a benchmark of steadfastness.
29th June 2010
25th May 2010