The Balvenie already had a 17 Year Old Madeira finish a few years ago, and this was recently upgraded to a Balvenie 21 Years Madeira Cask.
Surprisingly the Balvenie website says it was matured in traditional oak casks for at least 21 years before begin transferred… which would mean they’re not counting the Madeira period? Or could it be just a couple of months in Madeira casks?
It was originally a travel retail exclusive but you can now find it in regular shops as well.
Balvenie 21 yo ‘Madeira Cask’
(40%, OB +/- 2017)
Nose: fruity and not too sweet. There’s honey, floral blossom, hints of apples and mirabelles. Creamy vanilla. Light leathery notes, touches of white pepper ginger. Whiffs of shoe polish. Little Madeira to be found, is that a good thing?
Mouth: still quite juicy but rather weak, now with more American oak, leading to cinnamon and ginger. A big malty core, some dark honey now and more of these leathery notes. Herbal tea towards the end.
Finish: medium long, with more woody notes. Some herbs and a touch of grapefruit, but less of the fruity side.
This is a well composed Balvenie profile, but it’s rather weak and offers very few Madeira elements. Overall a slightly middle-of-the-road, pricey whisky. Already sold out in most places, but still in stock at Whiskysite.nl