Single malt whisky - tasting notes

14 Feb 2014

Black Bull 21yo Racer’s Reserve

Posted by: Ruben Luyten In: * Blends

Ecurie Ecosse Black BullDuncan Taylor’s Black Bull brand is sponsoring Ecurie Ecosse, a motor racing team with a great history that goes back to the 1950’s. The team had a 2011 revival and will now be driving a BMW Z4 GT3 in the British GT championship and the Blancpain Endurance series.

To celebrate this sponsorship, they’ve launched a Black Bull Racer’s Reserve, a 21 years old blend. Apparently the racers chose the whiskies, but the actual blending was left to the specialists at Duncan Taylor.

 

 

Black Bull 21yo Racer's ReserveBlack Bull 21 yo ‘Racer’s Reserve’ (50%, Duncan Taylor 2013)

Nose: quite a neutral, half grainy / half citrusy nose. Nothing harsh, just lots of muesli and cereals. Stewed fruits and lemon peel. A little fresh oak and mint. Less sherry than we’re used to seeing in Black Bull blends. Disappointingly generic. Mouth: again a rather fresh but also slightly dull blend with hardly any sherry. Lots of oranges. Yellow raisins. Cinnamon and pepper from the oak. Faint toffee notes. Again a little mint. It’s smooth and harmless. Finish: medium long, a bit more spices. As expected.

You can’t deny the fact that the Duncan Taylor team knows how to compose a blend and filter out the roughness of the grains. It’s smoothly polished, but on the other hand nothing stands out either. It’s just a normal blend which doesn’t fit the dynamics of racing in any way. Bringing together two nice brands isn’t enough to ask € 180. Only available from selected UK retailers.

Score: 75/100

Black Bull 21yo Racer’s Reserve 2 Ruben Luyten 2014-02-14
  • Marcus

    My neighbor loves Black Bull and brings it to every party. I have tried to like it, but I don’t get it. My loss I’m sure… Seeing a special edition such as this with a rating of 75 says perhaps I’m not crazy after all (well…). Anyway, sometimes it’s a lot to ask for people to step outside of their comfort zone, even though that zone may be restrictive in nature. There is better juice out there!

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  • WhiskyNotes: It says 'single cask Scotch whisky' on the label, so yes, technically it can even contain a bit of Girvan grain. Not that it matters a lot though.
  • kallaskander: Hi there, could be a teaspooned blenders cask... technically not a single malt then.... that seems more probable than letting an IB bring out the fir
  • Glenn Vanbellingen: If you put the 12 y origin at 40% head to head with the 12 y origin 46% you see it immediately or better you taste it immediately.

Coming up

  • Ardbeg 1972 (Douglas Laing OMC)
  • Jura 1972 SMWS 31.4
  • Balblair 2002
  • Kavalan Solist sherry (for LMdW)
  • Tullibardine 1980 (Malts of Scotland)
  • Ardbeg 1998 (Malts of Scotland)

1578 notes by Ruben

WhiskyNotes - Ruben LuytenThis blog is my personal collection of impressions, written while searching for the ultimate single malt whisky.