The Balvenie

The Balvenie Caribbean Cask 14-Year Old Single Malt Review

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 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.


Last Minute Father’s Day Gift Ideas – 2015 Edition

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.
  • Tovolo Ice Sphere Mold – Looks cool in your glass, but more importantly the ice dilutes very slowly.