Review: Balblair 2000 2nd Release.

Balblair Distillery is located near to the town of Tain, which places it into the Northern Highland region. It has a capacity of 1.8 million litres a year and is currently owned by Inver House Distillers.

balblair distillery

Balblair uses a vintage system rather than labelling its expressions with an age statement. The core range contains vintages from 1983, 1991, 2000 and 2005. There are various travel retail expressions available, which also use vintages.

This expression is the 2nd Release of the 2000 Vintage which has been matured for 13 years in American Oak, ex-bourbon casks and five years in first fill Spanish Oak butts.

Balblair 2000 (2nd Release) O.B, Distilled 2000 – bottled 2017, 46%abv, press sample.


The nose has a fantastic rich feeling but yet seemingly remains light. Elements of cedar wood, unlit cigars and red apple mix with a blanket of milk chocolate, fruitcake and some distant tropical fruits. Touches of honey appear intermittently.

The palate continues the light yet rich feeling of the nose. There is a twist of orange peel, perhaps darker, more like marmalade. A mahogany influence and soft spices emerge with touches of cloves and nutmeg. The chocolate we found on the nose turns from milk to dark. Given time there is a nutty feeling and some tannins emerge as we head to the finish.

The finish is juicily tannic with a heady mixture of drying spices contrasting with dollops of sweet honey.

An elegant whisky with a restrained and subtle sherry influence with its roots true to the lighter Balblair house style. 

You can find more tasting notes and whisky news in the Amateur Drammers Archives.

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