The Balvenie Fifty: Marriage 0962 (42.8% ABV) is a marriage of four single cask whiskies, which were aged for at least 50 years, in American oak barrels.
|The Balvenie Fifty: Marriage 0962|
Each of the four barrels used, were hand selected from the oldest sections of Balvenie’s stocks by their Malt Master David C. Stewart MBE.
Marrying whisky of this age is rarely attempted. Liquid given 50 years or more to express itself can develop flavours that are uniquely intriguing, but their extreme variances of taste, strength and depth make the task complex to say the least.
David’s accomplishment has been to select and vat four casks into an exquisite whole that combines – and enhances – their many delicate notes. In this way, The Balvenie Fifty: Marriage 0962, is said to be a unique expression displaying David’s ongoing commitment to experimentation and innovation.
Balvenie has a rich history of 50 Year Old variants. Its first was a 1937, bottled in 1987, at a time when such vintages were almost unknown. Mirroring today’s release, the 1937 was a vatting of four constituent casks, each imparting its own unique and aged flavour.
In 2002, the smallest ever release of Balvenie saw a mere 83 bottles of uniquely rich liquid taken from the famed Cask 191, Balvenie’s last cask remaining from the 1950s. In April 2018 one of the last remaining bottles of Cask 191 sold at The Worshipful Company of Distillers auction for £30,000.
In 2012, Balvenie’s third 50 Year Old was drawn from a 1962 European oak sherry hogshead. Just 88 bottles were sold in honour of David’s 50th year with William Grant & Sons. And 2014 saw the twin bottlings of two identical casks from 1963 which had matured with markedly different characters. Marriage 0962 continues this tradition of innovation by presenting a 50-year-old with an even more complex story.
Commenting on the launch, Alwynne Gwilt, UK Brand Ambassador for The Balvenie, said: “We are lucky to have an incredible array of old whisky stocks, deriving from the fact we have had consistency through both family ownership and David’s long term commitment to the company. I am very excited to see this new release come to market as there is something markedly special about releasing a whisky which has spent so many decades in casks at our beautiful home in Speyside. The skill which David brings to his role as Malt Master is unparalleled and I have no doubt that the consumers who try this will be blown away, as they always are at David’s creations.”
Limited to a release of just 12 bottles, The Balvenie Fifty: Marriage 0962, will be available next month, from a selection of specialist retailers, including; Harrods, Hedonism Wines and Selfridges, for a RRP of £27,500.
Posted by Steve Rush