This review is going to look at the Balvenie 25 year old Triple Cask, it’s a Balvenie from the Triple Cask range which is exclusive to travel retail however it can also be found on some websites. As for the dram I’m using for the sample it was purchased from MasterOfMalt’s DrinksByTheDram service, so if would like to try a sample then click on the link I’ve created. The Triple Cask range offers three expression which are the 12yr, 16yr and the 25yr. This review will look into the Balvenie 25 Year Old Triple Cask which is the top whisky for the Balvenie Travel Retail range. So without further or do I’ll quickly explain about the Triple Cask range and how they differ and then dive into the tasting notes.
So what makes the Triple Cask unique?
In the Triple Cask range none of the casks are used for finishing the whisky, unlike in the Doublewood range where finishing takes place. We’ll use the Balvenie 25yr as our example this means that all three casks being used Oloroso Sherry, 1st Fill Bourbon Barrels and Traditional Whisky Casks holds the whisky in them for 25 years and then being combined together in a large Marrying tun for six months so all the flavours can combine together giving each of the Triple Cask expressions its unique style and character.
Colour: Deep Amber.
Nose: Heavily stewed fruits in their own juices, sweet raisins, jackfruit & sultanas. Sweet tobacco leaves, Creamy intense vanilla remaining a constant throughout, toasted orange peel, Sweet blossom honey, hazelnuts and cinnamon. A lot on this nose and I could go on nosing it. If this is an indication for what the palate holds then we’re in for a treat!
Palate: Another light arrival which soon develops into a medium full body. Spiced Oak hinting its age, it’s like biting into a cinnamon swirl glazed with icing sugar giving it its sweetness but the spice is not overpowering one another. Now make way for those fruity notes of dates, raisins, figs and fresh citrus character as a combination of grapefruit and orange peels offering the waxy citrus coating covered in a honey jacket and bursting in flavour. Even more flavour is found unravelling itself in rich cocoa, like a 90% dark chocolate & a warm vanilla creamy custard.
Finish: A mouth warming fruity character linger around the palate, those dates, figs and raisins all unravelling themselves from a sweet tobacco leaf wrapping. Cinnamon powder infused with honey filled with sweetness and bursting with pockets of soft spice to the finish. So juicy that you don’t want it to end.
AGE: 25 yrs
CASKS: Oloroso Sherry Butts, 1st Fill Bourbon & Traditional Whisky Casks.
DISTILLERY: Balvenie Distillery
COMPANY: William Grant and Sons
REGION/ORIGIN: Speyside, Scotland
EXCLUSIVE: Yes (Travel Retail Exclusive)
Comments: My opinion on the Balvenie 25yr Triple Cask is that it’s definitely a unique whisky, its flavour profile really does offer up a lot of character to the nose and palate. As for comparing it to the other Triple Cask expressions you can see that it does have very little spice whereas the younger expression hold more spicier palates and finished so it’s much more rounded out. To bring in the topic of price, it can be found around £385 which is quite a dear price to pay for a 25yr considering the other products in its age range but one must give it recognition for spending 25yr maturing in each Casks imparts much more flavour compared to finishing a whisky so therefore I feel it is justifiable especially if you compare it to its 25yr Single Barrel release where this has much more better value for money.
Now one thing I did want to get off my chest is the fact it is bottled at 40% abv with added colour, for a 25yr I felt it could have been left at a higher abv so all the raw flavours can be allowed to present themselves more easily, as for the added colour well I feel it should be left out as differences in batches are natural but as for keeping consistency it’s understandable for those keeping an eye on the colour especially for certain markets. Again it is limited to travel retail but if you are looking for a dram to size it up then do check out MasterOfMalt like I did. If you have around £400 which you are willing to spend on buying a whisky and are looking for a super fruity characterful, low spiced honeyed finish of a dram then this could be straight down your avenue. For me I really enjoyed it and wish I was able to pick myself up a bottle.