To many, the word ‘marriage’ means something special and beautiful, the union of two souls who are perfect for each other.
But to lovers of single malt whisky, it can mean something else – a ‘marriage’ of exquisite whiskies that come together to form something rare, harmonious, and ultimately, perfect together.
When it comes to creating exquisite marriages of flavours in a whisky, few do it as well as The Balvenie’s Malt Master David C. Stewart MBE. After all, he not only has over 60 years of experience in whisky making, he is also a pioneer when it comes to finishing and marrying whiskies.
Back in 1983, Stewart was the first whisky maker to experiment with maturing The Balvenie in two different wood types in succession, and bottled the resulting whisky as The Balvenie Classic.
Since then, most of its core range whiskies have undergone a finishing process, including its flagship 12 Year Old DoubleWood, and all its other core expressions
However, Stewart recently outdid himself with the Balvenie’s Rare Marriages range of luxury single malt whiskies, created for the discerning Scotch drinker.
This is a collection of three distinct whiskies that pay tribute to Stewart’s dedication to designing and building exceptional flavour, through the marriage of rare casks.
The Balvenie recently completed the launch of its Rare Marriages range in Malaysia with the introduction of The Balvenie Thirty and The Balvenie Forty, to join the previously released The Balvenie Twenty-Five.
The Rare Marriages range features casks that have stood the test of time, each patiently tended to for decades of maturation to reach a fine age.
Only a small selection of the rarest casks, each of exceptional quality and unique individual flavour, are brought together by Stewart’s expert nose in a traditional oak marrying tun, resulting in unparalleled depth of flavour.
The Balvenie’s whiskies are well-known for its distinct runny honey and underlying rich oakiness, something that the Rare Marriages range has as well. However, dive deeper into the whiskies, and that familiar honeyed oakiness evolves into complex layers of toasted marshmallows, fresh fruit and cinnamon, with layers of exceptional complexity in every sip.
“There are few whiskies that embody the true craft and heart of our Malt Master like the Rare Marriages range,” said Brett Bayly, The Balvenie Southeast Asia’s Regional Brand Ambassador.
“The way each cask has been brought together is an incredibly intricate process, and takes true skill and intuition.
“The result is something very special and one that speaks to the true heart of what The Balvenie stands for – flavours that are seemingly simple, yet incredibly complex.“
A whisky of exceptional character, The Balvenie Twenty-Five hints at The Balvenie’s most sought-after flavours - bold vanilla oak, crystalised ginger and sweet runny honey.
For The Balvenie Thirty, however, Stewart married traditional American and European oak casks that have been matured for decades, crafting a whisky that is the Speyside distillery’s sweetest and most honeyed expression yet, with a silky sweetness that gives way to great depth of rich honey, mellow oaky tones and hints of candied orange peel.
Last but not least, we have The Balvenie Forty, the boldest in the range.
Using some of the rarest casks that have been carefully matured in The Balvenie warehouses, Stewart MBE crafted a bold marriage of extraordinary character from American and European casks, resulting in a rich and refined dram full of intense honeyed oak and rich fruits, a complex layer of sweetness and spice; and warming notes of ginger and citrus.
To bring to life the layers of complexity of the whiskies within the Rare Marriages range, The Balvenie commissioned artwork by three renowned international artists – wood artist Rebal Jber for The Balvenie Forty, South Korean leatherwork artist Junsu Kim for The Balvenie Thirty, and paper quilling artist Yulia Brodskaya for The Balvenie Twenty-Five.
While The Balvenie has always prided itself on being the world’s ‘most handcrafted whisky”, the Rare Marriages range truly represents the pinnacle of what it has to offer.
The Balvenie Rare Marriages range is available at Wholly Spirits, Tong Woh Retail, and Hock Guan Wines & Spirit Sdn Bhd. You may also email TBV.RareMarriages-MY@wgrant.com to purchase or for further inquiries.