The Balvenie DoubleWood 12-Year-Old Single Malt Review

Photo courtesy William Grant & Sons

Photo courtesy William Grant & Sons

The Balvenie DoubleWood is a Speyside single malt whisky.  Aged 12 years, this whisky is matured in two different types of casks.  First it ages in a traditional oak whisky cask then it’s transferred to a first fill sherry cask.  I assume traditional oak whisky casks mean they are using ex-bourbon barrels, which would impart some vanilla and spice to the whisky.  The 12 year is the youngest of their core line of whiskies, although a 17-year-old expression of DoubleWood is available.  Owned by William Grant & Sons, The Balvenie is positioned as a premium whisky along the likes of The Macallan, its biggest competitor.

Sweet nose here, with vanilla, toffee, malt and baked apple.  The palate isn’t as sweet as the nose, and carries a slightly thin body.  Maybe the latter is due to the low 40% abv.  I get a subtle mix of sweet ginger, vanilla, malt and soft oak.  The slightly sweet finish becomes a bit dry.

Overall, not a bad whisky.  It was a bit thin and subtle for my tastes, but I did appreciate the ginger kick on the palate.  Like the Glenfiddich 12, this is an easy Scotch to get into, especially for the bourbon drinker looking to branch out.  I’m glad I got to taste this, but I’m not in a rush to pick up a bottle.

(Note:  A small review sample was provided by William Grant & Sons.)

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