Friday, 11 November 2011

One man's creation - The Balvenie Forty

When a distillery releases significantly aged stocks, let’s say 30 years plus, it is generally safe to say it has been a team effort of Malt Masters. Over the 30+ years it is almost certain that at least 1 Malt Master has been and gone, perhaps more. Therefore the new make spirit that was layed down in casks by one man (or woman) is being married and bottled by another.

This is where David Stewart's achievement at The Balvenie really comes into its own. With very nearly 50 years service (this amazingly does not make him the longest serving member of the team at The Balvenie) it was David himself that layed down the new make in the early Seventies that was released this week as The Balvenie Forty.

David Stewart is the longest serving Malt Master in the industry and has picked up a thing or two in his time at the helm of The Balvenie as well as previously Glenfiddich. This experience has led to some incredible releases over the years and The Balvenie Forty is due to follow in this line.

I have not had a chance to sample as yet (come back in two weeks and I should have the experience for you) so I will leave it up to David Stewart himself to share his tasting notes –

The aroma of The Balvenie Forty is deep and rich, with fragrant floral notes, underpinned by sweet vanilla oak, fresh fruit and hints of raisin, sultana and spice.  Its taste is a lusciously creamy complexity of sweet vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and oak, combined with a mouth-watering sensation of butter toffee and delicious sherried richness.

So there it is, £2500 well spent. If you have the urge then Travel Retail and Harrods et al are the places to spend your hard earned pennies.

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