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Balblair 1990 Islay Cask 1466 (Master of Malt)

(70cl, 50.4%)

Balblair 1990 Islay Cask 1466 (Master of Malt)

Balblair Islay Cask Bottling Note

This delicious 1990 vintage is a Balblair with a difference. In fact, it sees the usually spicy, malty whisky imbued with a gloriously peaty flavour. Rather than add the peat in the traditional way (by distilling the spirit from peated malt), the distillers took the unusual step of ageing the whisky in an American oak barrel which previously held a maturing Islay malt. This is something Balvenie has had good success with in the past, and this cracking cask-strength dram is also rather wonderful.

Tasting Note by The Chaps at Master of Malt

Nose: What the deuce? Some kind of trick, surely. This smells overwhelmingly, potently, of delicious, freshly squeezed apple juice. Copella Apple Juice to be precise. The Bourbon cask has clearly had some influence here. Given time in the glass, there is a development of very subtle peat, which complements without ever being intrusive. A touch of cinnamon and brown sugar to go with the apple. Lovely Stuff.

Palate: Following an initial hit of mid-80’s tuck-shop sweetness (Refreshers of both sorts – chewy and chalky), the peat is immediately apparent here. Becomes much more savoury than the nose and initial palate would suggest. Initial short-crust pastry notes (buttery, too) are fleeting, giving way to caramelised bananas, and a touch of Nasturtium leaf. Becomes more grown-up than the nose hinted. The best of both worlds?

Finish: Herbaceous. Mint, and parsley give way to the seam of peat, which given time becomes more menthol than phenol. Hints (but only hints) of bitumen, and ash meld into one delicious, fruity, gristy, meaty ‘ball’.

Overall: This whisky has got that rare ‘x-factor’. It starts sweet as you like on the nose, but the palate and finish progress beyond the simplicity that can sometimes be implicit with that term, and meld together into a seamless experience of mouth-filling flavour. Nothing is missing here, everything is balanced. Great Whisky.

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Balblair 1990 Islay Cask 1466 (Master of Malt) Reviews

Many thanks to Masterofmalt.com

Beatiful edition, great whisky!!! Many thanks for this peaty Balblair guys, David, Poland.

1st March 2014

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