It’s almost a year ago I review my last Balvenie, and since there are lot’s of them around, why not have another look at a product from this distillery. Up untill now I reviewed some Balvenies with an age statement, this time I’m going to have a look at a Balvenie from a vintage, 1989 to be precise.
Those of you who know Balvenie, know that one of the best Balvenies around is the 21yo Portwood. yet in 2003, a vintage Portwood saw the light of day, this 1989 but also a 1991 exists. Two years later, in 2006, a 1993 vintage was released. I haven’t tried this 1993 yet, but earlier the 1991 was rather disappointing, still it fetched 78 points. Let’s have a look if this 1989 is any better, maybe even as good as the famous 21yo!
Color: Pinkish gold.
Nose: Buttery, and creamy. Sweet cookie dough, but also a slight woody and winey note is present. The more this breathes, the more a spicy woody note comes to the fore. Red fruit hard candy. Quite dusty after a while. Vanilla and dough again. Also some candied sweet tangerine skins.
Taste: A sweet candy note, malty and quite dull at first. The Port even though is not heavy, dominates the palate, still it dominates in a transparent way, since it lets through the malty distillery character of Balvenie. All in all a funky battle between winey wood, (with a slight bitter edge to it), and it’s sweetness. Definitely some citrus in here, Tangerine or sugared orange skins.
Again a very nice and never misbehaving Balvenie. Nothing wrong with it, but it also doesn’t stick out either. This Balvenie will also never drive to fast or smoke a cigarette where it isn’t allowed. It obeys. It isn’t bad either, but for me a little bit boring. Still it’s a Portwood, and it isn’t harsh as some whiskies that came in contact with Port pipes can be. The aroma’s fit well together, so it has good balance. A bit weak with its 40% ABV, but it offers yet another variation on the Balvenie theme, again with a lot of reduction.