The Balvenie Caribbean Cask 14-year-old single malt is one of the first Scotches I purchased. I’ve heard good things about The Balvenie’s core range, and I find the process of “finishing” whisky interesting. Here we have a whisky that’s aged 14 years in “traditional oak whisky casks,” then finished in ex-Caribbean rum casks. There’s no official note on how long the whisky is finished in these rum barrels, but I’m guessing it’s just a few months.
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.
Haven’t picked up a gift for the old man yet? With Father’s Day just a few days away, I thought I’d give some whiskey and whiskey-related gift recommendations, in no particular order. I’ve linked to a full review where available.
- Booker’s Bourbon Batch 2015-02 – Big bourbon flavors in this barrel-proof offering from Jim Beam. $55
- George Dickel No. 12 Tennessee Whisky – A no-nonsense whisky with caramel, vanilla and oak flavors. $30
- Forged Oak Bourbon – A limited release from Orphan Barrel, but still available, bourbon that’s big on oak. $65
- Alberta Rye Whisky Dark Batch – A little added sherry gives this Canadian rye whisky an interesting flavor profile. $30
- The Balvenie Caribbean Cask 14 Year Old Single Malt Scotch – A full review coming later. This is a great transition to Scotch for the bourbon drinker. The rum cask maturation really sweetens things up. $65
- Johnnie Walker Platinum Label – Full review coming in a few weeks. One of Johnnie Walker’s newest releases, this 18 year old expression turns up the fruit and adds a little smokiness. $99
- Four Roses Single Barrel Bourbon – A robust 100 proof bourbon full of caramel, spice and fruit. Look out for a barrel proof version from your liquor store. $50
- Bourbon Empire by Reid Mitenbuler – A great read. Mitenbuler covers bourbon’s history, unraveling those tall tales we read about all the time. $19 at amazon.
- Glencairn Whisky Glass – There’s no better way to nose and appreciate whisky than drinking out of a Glencairn glass. It’s how I sample my whisky. glencairnwhiskyglass.com
- Tovolo Ice Sphere Mold – Looks cool in your glass, but more importantly the ice dilutes very slowly. tovolo.com