Overall rating
66.22/100
votes
355
Whiskybase ID
WB51629
Category
Blend
Bottler
George Ballantine & Son (GB&S)
Strength
40.0 % Vol.
Size
700 ml
Barcode
5010106113127
Added on
31 jan 2014 4:22 pm by BeatF
ColoredChillfiltered

Average value

€ 16.24

3 × in wishlist

355 × member ratings

851 × in collection

Whisky reviews for Ballantine's Finest

51 users have left 58 reviews for this whisky. Average rating is 66.22 points.

  1. robbert88 scored this whisky 69 points Expert Senior

    A young sharp whiskey. But a well-known player in the whiskey world.

    Great for visitors who want some whiskey in their coffee or cola.
    • Nose
      N: Creamy, buttery, floral, young and tart, metallic, and seems to have a hint of sherry in it. Little pear and grains.
    • Taste
      P: sharp alcohol, flat and watery. A metallic taste, oily. Heather flowers. Pepper. A sweetness of apple and sherry.
    • Finish
      F: short and flat. As soon as you swallow the whiskey, the aftertaste is almost immediately gone. The taste of pepper and a bitter wood taste lasts longest.

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  3. PariLevi scored this whisky 73 points Expert Senior

    young.
    • Nose
      72 72
    • Taste
      73 73
    • Finish
      74 74

  4. Boletus did not rate this whisky Connoisseur

    Die-hard malt lovers will certainly always take a critical look at blends produced in large quantities. But this shows that when blending, you don't necessarily have to rely on long-aged and rare malts if you want to achieve a result with a decent PGV, and cheap whiskey does not always mean poor quality. This whiskey should be tasted neat at least once before making the long drink.
    • Nose
      Lemons, clearly crisp (but by no means unpleasant) grain, creamy cereal notes, toffee, light malts play their part, unripe apricots, even a small hint of smoke can be felt
    • Taste
      ''Werther's Echte'' caramel cream candy, extremely velvety, unripe banana, minimal heather, soft malts are woven into the creamy basic structure of the grain portion, the oak is also recognizable, over time a few oranges form
    • Finish
      Light, but not short, a little pepper, green hazelnuts, here too malty moments briefly appear again, a belated cocoa note arrives, a trace of salmiak, minimal smoke (but you have to look a long time for that)

  5. biberkopf scored this whisky 60 points Newbie

    honey, fruity

  6. GeekOn scored this whisky 69 points Member Senior

    Neet? Nope. With cola it's fine, strong taste and sweetness

  7. Sajmon scored this whisky 55 points Member Senior

    • Nose
      52 52
      Alcohol, wood, hints of chocolate
    • Taste
      57 57
      Bitter, dry
    • Finish
      55 55
      Medium, bitter, alcoholic

  8. Will_iam scored this whisky 80 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      79 79
    • Taste
      80 80
    • Finish
      81 81

  9. MGHOW scored this whisky 60 points Member Senior

    I am so surprised, though not in this present industrial climate, at how poor this has become compared to the heady days when it was one of Jim Murray's picks of the year...maybe back in 2012...then it was a flavourful, fresh and juicy blend.... but now alas, it is one of the worst 'brand' blends I have tried. The nose is grainy, the taste has a slight lemon flavour, and the finish is grainy. A shame. Good for mixer and nothing else. Almost certainly the fault of Pernod Ricard who seem to have no respect for quality Scotch whisky......

  10. CellarToberi scored this whisky 81 points Member Senior

    Irregular legs, transform to straight long narrow ones. Water pushes sweetness to the fore and converts to tannins the metallic note in the finish. Nosing the empty glass: surprisingly crisp notes of smoke, malt, citrus fruit, creaminess, spiciness. It is my impression that there is a small proportion of quality single
    malts in it, and a high proportion of lesser quality scotch aged in overused casks.
    • Nose
      Restrained. Grain: sweet corn bread, biscuit. Fruity: zest. Backing spices, sweet. Sharp earthiness. Floral notes. Slight touches of wood, smoke, and creaminess. Compact: very little transition.
    • Taste
      Sweet upfront, with light spiciness and fruitiness on midpalate. Slightly salty. Mouth-cladding. Very little development.
    • Finish
      Short to medium: sweet and spicy. Light smokiness and tannins. Metallic note.

  11. Maga scored this whisky 68 points Member Junior

    not a bad blend!

  12. Travelller scored this whisky 65 points Member Senior

    65/100

  13. Xaver did not rate this whisky Expert Senior

    • Nose
      Notes from an online blind tasting.

      Colour:
      Shiny gold

      Nose:
      Starts very creamy and with liquid wax. This is followed by a slightly salty note and subtle smoke. Fermented, mushy peach and caramel cream candy.
      With a little time in the glass, the dry wood comes through more clearly. Now also a lot more vanilla and rust dust. Somewhat malty in the background. Something like dark wheat beer. Subtle gum and sour cherries.
    • Taste
      Soft, sweet start. Becomes creamy and slightly waxy again. More light fruit notes in the taste. Which go in the direction of compote. Slightly metallic and coconut. Again that pinch of salt and the flag of smoke. Curry, green bananas and a hint of cloves.
    • Finish
      Rather short. Slightly peppery and again the sweetish light compote. The rust dust with the smoke flag sticks to the palate.

  14. kikist scored this whisky 58 points Expert Senior

    It really overperformed my expectations, I will say better then most of the blends in that price range.
    Real complain is watery taste and extremely short finish.
    There is really no some bold off notes
    • Nose
      68 68
      bananas, herbal, sweet, hints of sweat, oak
    • Taste
      49 49
      pretty flat, hints of pepper, watery
    • Finish
      58 58
      bread, lemon

  15. DistiLesha scored this whisky 68 points Expert Senior

    40 alcohols in a blend is impressive! Overall, too many grain alcohols and not enough single malts, it is difficult to evaluate such a blend.
    N: 20 T: 17 F: 14 B: 17
    • Nose
      Very balanced, malty brew, creamy
    • Taste
      The pungency, sweetness of red apples, grain alcohols hit hard enough
    • Finish
      The finish is very alcoholic

  16. Kilo1 scored this whisky 67 points Expert Junior

    a classic, for the money it’s not bad, especially good if they took it at a discount, it doesn’t bother even when talking in the top three. For thoughtful tastings, he is nibbled by itself.

  17. Slàinte Mhath scored this whisky 65 points Super Administrator

    Ballantine's Finest is a young, low-priced Blended Scotch that has a reasonable quality and is certainly drinkable on its own. One of the lead malts in this blend is Auchentoshan, giving Ballantine's a light, sweet and floral character. The nose is quite grainy with nuts, honey and maple syrup. Although it tastes fairly rough and immature, there is a pleasant burned sugar sweetness with a good amount of sherry cask influence. The finish is quick, vague and definitely lacking intrinsic quality. Not a spectacular but honest blend which works well as a mixer.

    RATING: 2.2/5.0 stars ≙ 65 pts → INFERIOR [+]
    • Nose
      70 70
    • Taste
      65 65
    • Finish
      60 60

  18. Stanzeflasche scored this whisky 72 points Connoisseur

    Few flavors. You can smell grain and cereals, corn and wheat, a dash of lemon and caramel, that's all. And the nose has no fullness, even in the best glass in the world, you would hardly feel it. Not too badly balanced, however. In the mouth, vanilla, crushed quinces, dry wood. It's obviously very young, quite alcoholic. The finish tears off in a rather unpleasant way. It's earthy and short. No length in the mouth, after swallowing you have nothing left on the palate, except the alcohol of course.

    https://ilikesky2020.blogspot.com/2020/10/ballantines-finest.html
    • Nose
      75 75
    • Taste
      73 73
    • Finish
      69 69

  19. AdamsB scored this whisky 54 points Expert Senior

    I do not like. But nice to try to get to know the taste.
    • Nose
      Sweet, pear, cereal,
    • Taste
      Vanilla, little oily, alocohol
    • Finish
      Quickly turns into a peppery finish with bitter chocolate. Finish is very short, slightly alcoholic tip.

  20. Tom na Gruagaich scored this whisky 75 points Connoisseur

    Fits already, very soft, does not come over so young. OK, but that was it. PLV is good.

  21. schengel10 scored this whisky 60 points Connoisseur

    A very simple blend.
    • Nose
      [N] Fairly decent nose: flowery, fruity, some vanilla;
    • Taste
      very soft and slightly sprightly on the go, a little vanilla, fruit, bitter note, one-dimensional;
    • Finish
      short finish;

  22. dandan798 scored this whisky 79 points Expert Senior

    Very enjoyable, affordable blend! Haven't tried the recent bottlings though. This would have been very interesting at 46 per cent!
    • Nose
      80 80
      sweet, fruit, apple, cherry, dried fruit, raisins, vanilla, honey, caramel, cinnamon
    • Taste
      82 82
      fruit, apple, berries, sour cherry, spice, pepper, vanilla, raisins, grapes, chocolate, honey
    • Finish
      79 79
      apples, pear, oak, dark chocolate, spice, vanilla, honey, citrus

  23. Othorion scored this whisky 59 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      60 60
    • Taste
      58 58
    • Finish
      58 58

  24. Falnor scored this whisky 48 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      52 52
    • Taste
      48 48
    • Finish
      50 50

  25. whiskyd scored this whisky 67 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      65 65
    • Taste
      70 70
    • Finish
      65 65

  26. Crann feàrna scored this whisky 76 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      80 80
    • Taste
      80 80
    • Finish
      70 70

  27. Dre73 scored this whisky 65 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      70 70
    • Taste
      60 60
    • Finish
      60 60

  28. Dre73 scored this whisky 65 points Connoisseur

    Very easy and accessible dram, flat, rather tasteless, not dirty or so, but really lacking in spunk.
    • Nose
      Sweet, little salty, some honey. Somewhat flat.
    • Taste
      Initially an aqueous mouthfeel. Soft, flat, sweet, honey.
    • Finish
      Short, flat, some sweetish honey-like weather.

  29. boy_genius_ck scored this whisky 64 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      76 76
    • Taste
      72 72
    • Finish
      63 63

  30. boy_genius_ck scored this whisky 64 points Connoisseur

    not as abhorring as i remember, and technically, i've matured as a whisky drinker
    • Nose
      sweet, floral, honey, grains, sugars, light fruits, light malt, hint of maritime
    • Taste
      sweet, grain alcohol, light fruits, spicy, light citrus tang, light honey, light floral
    • Finish
      short, dry and spicy, grain sweetness, light fruits, sweet grains and alcohol at the back

  31. lachaineduwhisky did not rate this whisky Expert Senior

    I was expecting something completely low-end, infamous or tasteless, I was surprised by its balance and small creamy finish.
    Enthusiasm 4/5 (eh yeah)

  32. xFabe did not rate this whisky Member Senior

    The nose made me hope for a drinkable Scotch. I was taught then a better. To sniff out the Nosingglas okay; To drink this is mixed with some sweet stuff in a PET bottle on carnival.
    • Nose
      Light and above all floral, some women's shampoo, a bit sweet, raspberry yoghurt (more artificial flavor than real berry), overall tuts in the nose does not hurt, but also does not have much expression, second nose is even quite okay, still gets a piece of depth.
    • Taste
      Alcohol burns quite sharp on the tongue, then comes nothing for a long time, still nothing later, you realize that it is whiskey, but it tastes more like Scotch that was diluted and then aufgespritet.
    • Finish
      Especially alcohol and bitter oak, unfortunately completely worthless, leaving behind some fresh rinse water, then a strange dryness (as if you bite into a kitchen towel).

  33. pelle86 scored this whisky 71 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      71 71
    • Taste
      73 73
    • Finish
      70 70

  34. markjedi1 scored this whisky 79 points Connoisseur

    Ballanphroaig
    After the Ballantines 1965, 1985 and 2008 I will now try a more recent bottling. The label says this was bottled on the 16th February 2015.

    The nose is soft and sweet with an unmistakable smoky edge. Mildly sweet and sour at first whiff, the nose evolves toward young, yellow apples and loads of heather. Some (I would almost say obligatory) vanilla and you can state that this is a flawless and enjoyable nose.

    It is nicely oily and peaty from the start. Yes, on the palate, the peated whisky is clearly recognizable. I would say Laffie. The apples, along with the vanilla, have a hard time countering this to keep it accessible. Tasted blind, you might actually confuse this with a young Laphroaig. A little bit of pepper and some salt. Surprisingly peaty (and a lot more than I remember from the older bottlings).

    Salty finish, but very short.

    This is serious bang for your buck. Thanks, Pat.

  35. martinni scored this whisky 68 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      66 66
    • Taste
      67 67
    • Finish
      65 65

  36. Achany scored this whisky 76 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      80 80
    • Taste
      75 75
    • Finish
      72 72

  37. Matt80 scored this whisky 78 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      Lots of grain, a vague fishiness, caramel, sweet. Very simlar to JW Black.

      With water - vanilla, smoky, a little more sweetness.
    • Taste
      Rich grain, smoke, caramel, oily character. Again it's very similar to JW Black but with a little less body.

      With water - a little smokier.
    • Finish
      Short and sweet, a little smoke.

      With water - smokier.

  38. jankes scored this whisky 68 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      69 69
    • Taste
      67 67
    • Finish
      67 67

  39. Guntis scored this whisky 73 points Expert Junior

    • Nose
      73 73
    • Taste
      72 72
    • Finish
      70 70

  40. славон scored this whisky 75 points Member Senior

    • Nose
      73 73
    • Taste
      74 74
    • Finish
      75 75

  41. r0back55 scored this whisky 78 points Expert Junior

    Blend note
    • Nose
      81 81
    • Taste
      79 79
    • Finish
      79 79

  42. r0back55 scored this whisky 78 points Expert Junior

    • Nose
      Barley malt, vanilla, rotten fruits. Delicate notes of smoke, but not necessarily peat.
    • Taste
      Sweet, vanilla, oak and delicate peat.
    • Finish
      Short, sweet

  43. mer1973 scored this whisky 74 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      73 73
    • Taste
      77 77
    • Finish
      73 73

  44. theendh scored this whisky 75 points Expert Junior

    • Nose
      76 76
    • Taste
      70 70
    • Finish
      75 75

  45. lupowolf63 scored this whisky 62 points Expert Junior

    • Nose
      62 62
    • Taste
      64 64
    • Finish
      60 60

  46. J.K.Ch scored this whisky 55 points Expert Senior

    If you want to do the Irish coffee, it is good. 

  47. wbarchive_149037 scored this whisky 78 points Expert Senior

    For me the best cheap blend to be found in supermarket, if you consider that the Johnnie Walker Black Label is much more expensive and does not belong to the "cheap" blend category.
    • Nose
      Malty and dry, caramel and vanilla. Not extravagant bit quite pleasany since the grain is not dominating the whole.
    • Taste
      Hey, not that bad for a blend ! Not grainy, a bit malty and floral. Some honey notes. A bit light bit i must say that this is quite a good surprise.
    • Finish
      Short but clean.

  48. rottendon scored this whisky 55 points Connoisseur

    You absolutely do not have to, but there is much worse. May be suitable for mixing for lack of taste.
    • Nose
      straight from the bottle nothing, after heating by hand come vanilla, some apple and malt. Just had a raspberry, but they will not get back. The hangman knows where she came from. Instead, there comes some stuffy, indefinable fruit. Alcohol I do not feel in the aroma now as aggressive.
    • Taste
      also available only after heating. Before there is nothing. Then comes a lax sweetness with a clear, if still tolerable bitter undertone. (Grain) But this is much more discreet than z. B. the Johnnie Walker Red Label. The alcohol is relatively snappy and definitely anything but soft, with the second and third sips relative.
    • Finish
      very short, sweet and slightly bitter.

  49. Laugenbretzel scored this whisky 50 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      49 49
    • Taste
      49 49
    • Finish
      29 29

  50. Ray-Central-America scored this whisky 78 points Member Senior

    I saw this sitting in one of our local shops and the price as ¢ 12,000 colones which is approximately $20.00 for the bottle. The bottle is a full liter and I thought that it was a good buy, so we gave it a try.

    This is something that if you let it breathe for a few minutes the flavors really come out.

    There are your typical floral, vanilla and citrus, oh and a hint of brine on the nose.

    The initial taste, tabacco and smoke... rubber tire tube, leather, wet earth, a lot of the flavors that I enjoy.

    The finish lasts a while, but once you start getting down to the bottom of the dram, it seems that the alcohol turns to water and goes a little flat, if you know what I mean. That might be my taste buds going numb too.

    There is some burn if you take to much of a sip. Twice I was caught off gaurd when breathing in a taste and took a little to much.

    For being a $20.00 bottle, it isn't bad, but you have to let it open up first before taking the first swig.
    • Nose
      77 77
    • Taste
      79 79
    • Finish
      78 78

  51. Crann feàrna scored this whisky 76 points Expert Senior

    Everything you can expect from a best selling blend.
    Try mixing with ginger ale, makes a very good long drink!
    • Nose
      Balanced and complete. Soft sweetness of light fruits and blossom. Cereal notes.
    • Taste
      Malty arrival. Light spicy development, with lots of sweetness of apple, pear, banana hints. Light citrus.
    • Finish
      Light, dry, fresh.

  52. boy_genius_ck scored this whisky 64 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      61 61
    • Taste
      62 62
    • Finish
      50 50

  53. boy_genius_ck scored this whisky 64 points Connoisseur

    the only good thing about this is the presentation

  54. WhiskyLovingPianist did not rate this whisky Connoisseur

    ‘A journey blend'
    N: Smells like Highland with Spey notes. Yeasty, honey grain as standard and pleasingly, not overtly blended. Initially rather closed and hard to penetrate but given time it reveals some tomato notes, malt - sweet and peppery, definite oakiness, hints of cocoa, sherry and bananas, but its the presentation of the fine gristy grains which is to be commended.
    T: Majestic arrival from a light, salty/sweet, firm malty body - consistent, fluid and fruity with a grain led development that is wholly sustaining. The oak offers a touch of cocoa, fresh herbals and some pepper spice tingles. What an impressive malt presentation on the palate.
    F: A gradual fade out. Fresh vs sweet interplay as an outro to complete the journey.
    C: Ive always been bemused by the whisky community’s feedback on this blend. Currently rated on WB at 66.24[39] with Jim Murray scoring it a 96 [2014], Serge Valentin offering a modest 76 and thirty Connosr’s members rating it from 40-90. That’s a consistent flow of inconsistency. I haven’t come across many blends that i really enjoyed, Blue Hanger [3rd release] and Compass Box ‘The General’ have been outstanding exceptions. This blend wont touch those beauties but it will be remembered as a charming everyday drinker and one id be happy to drink anytime as long as this level of quality was maintained. Impressive blending indeed and a journey blend no less.

    Scores a B[-]

  55. nathanyael scored this whisky 73 points Expert Senior

    Used only for mixing!!! Hmmm, sounds like an excuse... ;)
    • Nose
      72 72
    • Taste
      70 70
    • Finish
      68 68

  56. Shane087 scored this whisky 24 points Member Senior

    The only good thing I can say about this Scotch is that I didn't over pay for it.  Maybe  I just got a bad bottle, but it was by far the worst Scotch I have ever tasted.  It's the only Scotch I have ever been willing to mix with something and even mixed it wasn't good. 
    • Nose
      17 17
    • Taste
      14 14
    • Finish
      18 18

  57. BeatF scored this whisky 82 points Photo Moderator

    I know this blend from my "childhood days". Of course, I drink it pure with my taste buds of today. And really make a wonderfully balanced drop without mistakes. The result is a fantastic price / performance ratio (currently in the Denner for the equivalent of € 12.60).
    • Nose
      A deep lake composed of the finest grain and sour malt; wonderfully rounded with milk chocolate and honey.
    • Taste
      Oranges, sweet chocolate, spicy alpine pasture with flower nectar.
    • Finish
      Honey, caramel, cocoa, enriched with the slightest smoke. It's pretty short, but it's all right.

  58. drkrylov scored this whisky 78 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      80 80
    • Taste
      80 80
    • Finish
      70 70

  59. drkrylov scored this whisky 78 points Connoisseur

    A classic blend.
    • Nose
      Expressive, crisp barley sugars. Touch of wood smoke, toffee.
    • Taste
      Rich and sweet. Barley and caramel, very gentle peat.
    • Finish
      Soft and sweet, fudge.

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