Balvenie 21 Portwood

Balvenie 21 Portwood 1

It’s kinda weird. I never really was into Balvenie, and I can honestly say that there are good and bad ones, yet the initial offerings have never really been my “thing”.

That being said, as anyone will tell you, finding different drams and trying different types is how you find what you like from the distillery. And since this one is reviewed quite a bit around here, I thought I’d have a dram of Balvenie 21 year Portwood.

I really do enjoy Port finishes on whiskies, as they add new dimensions like a Doctor Who episode. In this case, the port “pipes” that are used are 30 years old. If that doesn’t interest you at least a little bit, you… probably aren’t interested in port or whisky, honestly.

Balvenie 21 Portwood 2

Price: $276.95 (CAD) in the LCBO, which is not the travel exclusive and is watered down to 40%.

Region: Speyside

Abv: 40.0%

Colour: Dark stained maple

Nose: Sour grapes, strawberry, steak spice, currants, figs, smoke, dry tannic, umami in the background, popcorn

So many different, nice flavours, all jumping out, slapping your face and calling your mom up for another go. Naughty and nice, oh yeah.

Taste: Plum, sparkling wine, gravel, dark honey, parsley, bitter dark chocolate, candy

Very deep flavours that are coming from the port influence. The typical Balvenie honey flavours pop up and remind you that the nice distillery made this and to apologize for the rough state the nose left you in.

Finish: Butter, strawberry, smooth cream, milk chocolate, prunes, cucumber, rocket, more sour grapes

Like being buried in butter and left to die happy. Good times. There’s some light earthy flavours that lend some nice complexity.

Conclusion: This is a good mix and balance of flavours. Quite tough flavours as well, nothing shies away from the forefront. I’d recommend a dram of this anytime. Almost as good as the 30 year.


Scotch review #84, Speyside review #24, Whisky Network review #109

101 Whiskies to try before you die review #18


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