Balvenie DoubleWood 12 Year – Review

Balvenie 1

I’ve mentioned it before but I’ll mention it again, I’m primarily a bourbon and rye drinker. While I do like Scotch it’s usually too costly for me (I can get 2-3 nice bottles of bourbon or rye for the price of one nice Scotch) to buy more than one bottle at a time. Plus, when I do drink Scotch I like the smoky ones so I usually stick with 2-3 specific bottles.

However, when Christmas rolled around this year I decided to do some branching out into the world of Scotch. While I didn’t buy any full bottles I ran across a nice tasting set from Balvenie. I remembered having the beauty pictured above a few years ago at a friend’s house and liking it. So, I decided to drop a few bucks on the set.

While I could go into detail about Balvenie, their history, their drams, etc., in this instance I will leave that to the hard work already done by a few of my favorite bloggers: The Whiskey Wash and Angel’s Portion. Go ahead and check out the links. I’ll wait right here…

Now that your back, let’s move on to this honey vanilla delight.



Distiller: Balvenie

Owner: William Grant & Sons

Location: Dufftown, Scotland (Speyside)

Age: 12  Years Old

ABV: 43%

Mash Bill: 100% Malted Barley (Single Malt)

Price: $45-50*


Light caramel with and amber hue.


Fruit right up-front. I get pears, apples, and what seems to me to smell like unripe pineapple. These notes are quickly followed by malt, cocoa powder, and honeyed-vanilla. Overall it reminds me of some dessert wines I’ve had in the past. Really soft, pleasant, and inviting. A good start.


The palate follows the nose with some additions. Honey and malt at first. Followed by pears, caramel, vanilla, and a bit of oak. Easy drinking and perfect for a lazy afternoon.


It has a long finish with notes of malt, oak, char, and honey. It has a slow-warming character which makes me feel loved by this dram.


The value is hard to judge. I would totally buy another tasting set, but would I buy a full bottle? If I can find it for low-end of the market at $40-50 I will buy it. However, if all I can do is find it at $50+ (which is likely in my market) then I would have to pass.


I like this Scotch. It is a great introductory tipple which lets you know the level at which Balvenie starts “playing ball.” While I would buy it at the low-end of market I would probably pass on this one most days and go for one of Balvenie’s older and more complex offerings. Cheers!


85.5/100 (A Solid Tipple)

Balvenie 2

*Disclaimer: I bought a sample bottle of this tipple for my review. I have not been paid by Balvenie for this review and all opinions and comments are 100% my own. Your experience may vary if you purchase a full size bottle of this fine dram. Cheers!


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