THE BALVENIE DCS CHAPTER

DCS Chapter 3 – Secrets of the Stock Model

This chapter aims to exemplify David’s skill in managing stock. Yes, the classic image of a Master Blender or Malt Master is in a warehouse, soft lighting, nose in glass, but the reality of the role is examining tables and ledgers and managing a complex stock system: a science, an art, and, indeed, a craft.

“Assembling this chapter really brought me back to some moments in my career” said David C Stewart. And he did dive deep into our stocks to select some landmark gems, many of which he has clearly kept his eye on for decades. David includes one of the oldest casks in our warehouses for this chapter.

“I have revisited this 1961 several times recently and it is very representative of whisky we distilled in those years, big and sweet with floral notes coming into play, very unusual and almost magical.”

The next few choices highlight landmark years in the stock model. For instance, the 1973 cask could easily have been used for Port Wood when it was launched but luckily was from one of our “plentiful years”. It has matured into a stunning whisky.

The 1981 is the first vintage we would have used for Double Wood when it launched in 1993. So it felt right to include a cask from this year on the list of Chapter 3. The bottling of 1993 should remind that at this time the old bottle design has given way to the current appearance.

“That’s when things started to get really tricky”, said David C Stewart.

“The 2004 is a perfect representation of THE BALVENIE at this age, but this vintage also marks my 30th year as Malt Master.” Interestingly, it was also the year that David introduced The Balvenie Thirty. As we discussed this cask he painted a very poignant
picture for me.

I REMEMBER THE PAUSING IN MY LAB, SELECTING CASKS FOR BOTTLING FROM 1974 ONE MINUTE AND MAKING PLANS FOR NEW FILLINGS THE NEXT, CASKS THAT WOULDN’T BE BOTTLED UNTIL 2034 AS THE BALVENIE THIRTY. I FELT QUITE SMALL, BUT INCREDIBLY PROUD.

DCS CHAPTER 3 – SECRETS OF THE STOCK MODEL

1961 EUROPEAN OAK OLOROSO SHERRY HOGSHEAD

Aged 55 Years – Single Malt Whisky

Filled 14th June 1961

TASTING NOTES:

Aroma: Sweet, honeyed, but intensely fragrant with rose petals, lavender, and a delicate spiciness.
Taste: Beautifully deep with soft brown sugar, toffee and butterscotch with lingering spicy cinnamon notes.
Finish: Floral, creamy vanilla and spice.

DAVID C STEWART MBE – THE BALVENIE MALT MASTER

„I have revisited this 1961 several times and it is very representative of whisky we distilled in those years, big and sweet with floral note coming into play, very unusual and almost magical.“

DCS CHAPTER 3 – SECRETS OF THE STOCK MODEL

1973 EUROPEAN OAK OLOROSO SHERRY BUTT

Aged 43 Years – Single Malt Whisky

Filled 7th June 1973

TASTING NOTES:

Aroma: Deep, oaky and rich with dried fruit, marmalade, and spicy ginger.
Taste: Succulent spice followed by vanilla, dark chocolate, nuts and an earthy liquorice sweetness.
Finish: Luscious balance of dried fruits and spice.

DAVID C STEWART MBE – THE BALVENIE MALT MASTER

„This 1973 could easily have been used for PortWood when it was launched but luckily it was from one of our ‘plentiful years’. It has matured into a stunning whisky.“

DCS CHAPTER 3 – SECRETS OF THE STOCK MODEL

1981 REFILL AMERICAN OAK HOGSHEAD

Aged 35 Years – Single Malt Whisky

Filled 29th October 1981

TASTING NOTES:

Aroma: Malty, vanilla toffee and heather honey with notes of lemon zest.
Taste: Maple sweetness, glazed pineapple and citrus with vanilla and cinnamon.
Finish: Malty and sweet with layers of spice.

DAVID C STEWART MBE – THE BALVENIE MALT MASTER

„This 1981 is the first vintage we would have used for DoubleWood when it launched in 1993 – so it felt right to include a cask from this year.“

DCS CHAPTER 3 – SECRETS OF THE STOCK MODEL

1993 REFILL AMERICAN OAK HOGSHEAD

Aged 23 Years – Single Malt Whisky

Filled 6th December 1993

TASTING NOTES:

Aroma: Floral notes with light fruit.
Taste: Sweet and sticky, Toffee & honey balanced with oak and vanilla notes.
Finish: Elegant sweet und fruity.

DAVID C STEWART MBE – THE BALVENIE MALT MASTER

„1993 represents the year our range was re-imagined in the bottle we still use today, as well as the first use of the term DoubleWood, which introduced the double cask maturation process.“

DCS CHAPTER 3 – SECRETS OF THE STOCK MODEL

2004 EUROPEAN OAK OLOROSO SHERRY BUTT

Aged 13 Years – Single Malt Whisky

Filled 19th January 2004

TASTING NOTES:

Aroma: Rich and deep with orangepeel. Light oak.
Taste: Supple, with dark fruits and sherry notes, overall subtle and spicy.
Finish: Luxurious, sweetish finish with delicate spice and oak.

DAVID C STEWART MBE – THE BALVENIE MALT MASTER

„The 2004 is a perfect representation of The Balvenie at this age, but this vintage also marks my 30th year as Malt Master and interestingly the year we introduced The Balvenie Thirty.“

SECRETS OF THE STOCK MODEL

DCS Chapter 3 – 2017 Release

VIN­TAGE CASK NO. CASK TYPE FILLING DATE
1961 4193 European oak Oloroso sherry hogshead 14 Jun 1961
1973 8556 European oak Oloroso sherry butt 07 Jun 1973
1981 7824 Refill American oak hogshead 29 Okt 1963
1993 11621 Refill American oak hogshead 06 Dec 1993
2004 741 European oak Oloroso sherry butt 19 Jan 2004

 

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