The New Balblairs

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The New Balblairs

Postby Mustardhead » Sat Apr 07, 2007 11:53 pm

So what do people think of the new Balblair lineup?

It looks like Elements, 10, 16 and 26 have disapeared, I have no idea about the older versions... what is a little annoying is the way the prices have gone up. A lot!

I had the opportunity to sample the 1997 and 1989 expressions this week and I was impressed. The packaging is good, distinctive but restrained enough, and the bottles are really nice. Okay, enough about the outside, what about the whiskies?

Sweetshop flavours, like old fashioned sweetshops with barley sugars and pineapple chunks. The 1997 benefitted from a drop of water, it took away a touch of spirit which wasn't on the nose but was there on the palate.

Overall I preferred the 1989, so I bought a bottle :)

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Postby Aidan » Sun Apr 08, 2007 9:17 am

I will be buying some of the new ones. Everything I've tasted from Balblair so far (a limited amount, mind) has been excellent.

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Postby Deactivated Member » Mon Apr 09, 2007 10:43 am

I have to say that I haven't disliked any Balblairs that I've tried either. I think that Inver House are investing quite heavily in Balblair which explains the new branding and releases. The're also promising a dedicated website soon!

I like the older expressions and quite fancy the 79. If it falls between the previous release of a 26yo and fabled 38yo I'll be very happy.

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Postby les taylor » Mon Apr 09, 2007 11:09 am

Has anybody seen the new packaging? What do you think of it?


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Postby toshie » Mon Apr 09, 2007 6:36 pm

The new packaging has fantaastic 'shelf presence' or whatever the marketing-speak calls it, and the whiskies are good. I went to the launch night and tried all three, and for me, the 89 just shaved it

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Postby RufusA » Wed Apr 11, 2007 12:46 am

Went to the Balblair tasting at WL just as they were putting the finishing touches to the launch.

Very striking packaging and marketing, and Karen Walker (their marketing bod) gave an enthusiastic walkthrough of the pictures on the boxes, and the history behind the scroll work on the bottles etc. However this had (IMHO) more prominence than the whisky itself!

What struck me the most was speaking to Stuart Harvey afterwards at the stand, and essentially the product in a "1997" bottle will be the same as a "10 YO" in terms of taste characteristics. It just gives him a little more flexibility in the selection of casks i.e. you can use a 9YO cask in a 1997!

However prices are another thing, the 1997 seems to retail for pennies different to the older 16YO, but has spent 6 years less growing.

I like Balblair (a goodly amount), but sadly at over £25 a bottle retail price will nudge it outside of my criteria for an everyday drinking whisky! Particularly as I know heart of hearts that the extra money is paying for the packaging, fancy bottles, rather than supporting the likes of Stuart and John that make all the magic happen under the cork!


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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Wed Apr 11, 2007 12:20 pm

I have ordered an old 1979 26yo for 52.50 basically saving 30quid on the new 1979 which is probably 27-28yo. I personally feel the price increases are way too high and unwarrented.

I posted something similar in another forum.

Old 16yo £30.00
Old 26yo £52.50

New 1997 (10yo) £28.00
New 1989 (18yo) £40.00
New 1979 (28yo) £85.00

So an extra 2years on the old 16yo is a 33% mark up
and an extra 2years on the old 26yo is around 60% mark up

SO the nice packaging is expensive is it..... sorry I won't be getting any of the new bottling while the old are still available.

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Postby Deactivated Member » Wed Apr 11, 2007 1:46 pm

So are these the toney Balblairs?

I've heard they're rather wishy-washy.


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Postby irishwhiskeychaser » Wed Apr 11, 2007 1:52 pm

:lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

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