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Balblair Vintage 1989 review

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CHAMPAGNE of single malts

Champagne of single malts. At least that’s what Ralfy said. That expression fits to my world as well, at least when it comes to movies. This is like Alfred Hitchcock’s movie Champagne. Not the best one, he’s done but a fair showing. Just like Vintage 1989 is for Balblair.

I know that this 1989 vintage won a Gold Medal and “best in class” mention in the 2007 International Wine & Spirits Competition. And for many, it is the best Balblair. But for me, the 1997 felt better.

Balblair Vintage 1989 & Ballechin #5 Marsala Casks in Kerttulin Kievari

I tasted Balblair ’89 along with Ballechin #5 Marsala Cask at Turku’s best whisky bar, Kerttulin Kievari.

Bottled 2009, it is a 20 year old whisky. Beware: it is a delicate single malt and adding water may ruin the tasting experience.

Nose: Tangy, vanilla and citrus notes with floral touch. Stingy at first but gets mellow.

Taste: Lemon and citrus dominate. Barley, sugar and oak. Hints of spices.

Finish: Honey with spicy peppers. Delicate, but nice length and freshness.

Balance: Nice dram in great balance. I really didn’t get a chance to get to its full complexity, because I managed to get a big dollop of water in the mix. This one doesn’t need it, or if you add it, be careful! Ralfy warned about the water, too bad I saw his review after I had tasted this.

Colour: Pale amber 
Nose: 21  |  Taste: 22  |  Finish: 21  |  Balance: 21
Overall score: 85

Distillery: Balblair
Region: Highland
ABV: 43%
No added colouring

Balblair 1989 & Ballechin #5 in Kerttulin Kievari

Balblair 1989 and Ballechin #5 lined up at Kerttulin Kievari.

Check out Ralfy’s great review of Balblair 1989:

Johannes Lindblom
Johannes Lindblom
Finnish whisky enthusiast and the author of WhiskyRant! A digital marketing professional by day – a whisky reviewer and informer by night.

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