We cannot mention Balcones without thinking of recent events regarding ownership and the direction of the distillery. Thankfully things have moved on and we’re now able to get back to the whisky, which is what matters most at the end of the day. This particular tasting features 5 drams that will be available via Master of Malt as a limited edition set for Christmas. Priced at £29.99 if you find my comments below of interest then you can purchase the pack right here. As an ad hoc user of their dram sample service I find it a viable option for experiencing whiskies before you buy or offering a taste of a bottling that in reality is priced beyond your wallet, or in this case a series of releases that have mostly sold out. Labelled nicely and dispatched in a tightly protective box, you can use the empties for other samples and even send out sample drams to friends or make your own Christmas whisky package. Actually that reminds me I’ll have to do this for Mark at Malt Review this week.
Onto the whiskies themselves that provide a snapshot of their core ranges and some rather special versions. Balcones hasn’t been shy in trying new approaches and pushing back traditional boundaries. This challenging approach has created a field of strongly distinctive and memorable whisky experiences so I’m expecting more of the same here. Note the prices quoted do apply to slightly larger 75cl bottle sizes.
True Blue 100
Overall: a pleasant corn whisky opener with the nose winning out but in the context of this field seems rather timid.
Blue Corn Bourbon
Overall: at first it felt too much but then grew on me. If anything it prompts me to try some of the rums that Cadenheads stock on a regular basis as the price of whisky continues to rocket.
Staff Selection Limited Edition
Overall: I enjoyed the nose more on this one more than the palate.
A challenging selection of whiskies (plus a rum) from Balcones. My favourite here? It is a difficult decision but the Brimstone wins it just overall. Extreme in places but also surprisingly detailed it won’t be for everyone but it’d be something I’d enjoy come the weekend during these winter months.