Overall rating
Single Malt
Scotch Malt Whisky Society (SMWS)
Bottling serie
Rosehip & hibiscus infusion
Stated Age
09 years old
1st Fill French Oak Hogshead
Number of bottles
60.0 % Vol.
700 ml 750 ml
Added on
06 Jul 2017 12:22 pm by lrb85
UncoloredNon-chillfilteredCask StrengthSingle Cask Whisky

Average value

€ 118.90

one in wishlist

6 × member ratings

7 × in collection

Whisky Reviews for Balblair 2007 SMWS 70.21

3 users have left a review for this whisky and scored it an average of 85.75 points

  1. WhiskyLovingPianist scored this whisky 79 points Connoisseur


    Nine years in bourbon followed by a 1st-fill French oak hogshead finish for the remaining months. Infuriatingly, it’s the hogshead that takes all the credit. Why?

    N: Barley cereal meets raw varnished oak, full-frontal. Notes of freshly cut sharp red apples, hose hip [SMWS], a splash of emulsion over glycerol-ed apricots, onion-y=swede-like soft heat, [ginger] biscuits and caramel that decidedly turns to hard toffees. Adding water tends to promote the oak that hints a little towards [varnished] chestnut, but it’s the fresh onion-y, yeasty barley<oak that sticks. A tough and not particularly sweet nose, especially in comparison to the moderately savoury-sweet and certainly spirity-creamy official 2003, coming up.

    T: Forget it neat. [With water], the cask yet again leads - varnished and again with hints of chestnut. Very clean, active-woody bourbon-malt with an onion-cinnamon-cumin heat. Oaked marzipan on the turn, creaming up slightly with some sour-cream white chocolate. [No apricot cheese this time].

    F: Marzipan to vanilla and plentifully bourbon cask-led to a fresh bourbon-y finish. Medium-bodied all the way through. Sour, full-ish fat cream conclusion.

    C: The cask character works nicely with Balblair’s spirit but boy does the oak dominate. An interesting malt for bourbon drinkers perhaps, for those who like it hard and sour. I had already sampled this in the summer [2017]. My conclusions were similar, though I was way too generous with the mark [82]. After much contemplation:

    Scores a D+

  2. WhiskyLovingPianist scored this whisky 79 points Connoisseur

    N: There haven’t been many SMWS Balblair. Bowmore releases for instance have almost reached 300. I’ve found previous SMWS Balblair young and uneventful - those all from refill ex-bourbon. Time in first-fill French oak has given this 9yo a pleasing darkish hue. Nosing, we’ve a fruity-sweet fromage and certainly a firm suggestion of resinous Cognac oak. Water brings out more of the oak as well as Caramac & white chocolate. I think SMWS’s notes of ‘russet apples & rosehip peels’ are spot on. Never stops emitting creamy dairy notes.
    T: Flavour from the cask is served first, and with more of that sweet fromage, apricots, lots of caramel, cinnamon,.. The oak is resinous but well controlled and tasty with something familiar & similar to that walnut oak whisky from Midleton WB - so an associated ‘Frenchness’ then.
    F: Is the French oak just a finish, because what is revealed is an underlying creamy/milky bourbon vanilla core - one that does speak of distillery character, mainly through notes of vanilla, chocolate=caramel and summer fruits. The spirit has an underlying faultless purity that emerges at the very end, another sure sign of Balblair juice.
    C: That French oak [cognac?] cask is a tasty but a bit loud, burying the spirit until the very end. Thats ashame given the marvellousness of Balblair’s spirit. This is however a spirit & cask combo that works very nicely.Scores a C

  3. mandragoru did not rate this whisky Connoisseur

    SMWS tasting notes:

    We detected a mixture of sweet notes gently entwined with herbal aromas. A traditional hessian sack full of russet apples was next to rosehip peels and hibiscus petals as well as, caramels coated in dark chocolate. What an indulgence on the palate - double chocolate brownies scattered with cherries and hazelnuts accompanied by a glass of vintage Port wine. Water added the earthy note of a black tea called Pu-Erh from China and to taste now sweet dumplings simmering in bubbling cinnamon-spiced blackberry compote. After nine years in an ex-bourbon hogshead, we transferred this whisky directly into a 1st fill new French oak hogshead for the remainder of its maturation.DRINKING TIP: Slows you right down


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