Whisky Review – The Balvenie Tun 1401 Batch 2

David Stewart and The Balvenie Tun 1401

A while ago, Mark Gillespie of WhiskyCast fame invited us over to partake in a Virtual Tasting. While the tasting alone would have been more than sufficient, he provided me with a lovely parting gift in the form of a sample of the second batch of Balvenie’s Tun 1401. This was a well-received gift as I really like Balvenie and have commented on more than one occasion that the DoubleWood is a gateway or table Scotch. The Tun 1401 is a limited edition series prepared by Master Distiller David Stewart and named after his favorite marrying tun.

  • Appearance: Light amber with good lacing.
  • Aroma: A little bit astringent with hints of rubber, pineapples and toffee.
  • Taste: Very heavy with the alcohol and a little bit of wood smoke. With water, the alcohol recedes and a balance of the fruit (now more of candied citrus – lemons, oranges) and spices from the wood takeover and lead into a nice, long finish
  • ABV: 50.6%

I found this to be a very complex whisky. And, given the ABV, I have to recommend adding water as the flavors really come alive once the alcohol has been pushed to the background. All I can add is that any time Mark needs an extra panelist, I hope he calls upon me!


Many thanks to Mark Gillespie for sharing this sample with us!

3 replies »

  1. This is a very impractical whisky in terms of volume. Even an avid dramsman would be challenged to consume a ton of any particular vintage. Super sizing really needs to be limited to fries and frosties (and maybe the occasional gigantic matzo ball).



    • I believe you could super-size hot dogs (foot longs are awfully good) or hoagies (although I prefer things Primo sized). You could try the super-sized sundae (Friendly’s Crowd Pleaser which I have recently been told is not a single serving) or the Lumberjack breakfast at Denny’s (which I still believe is a single serving). Oh, and that would be tun as in a vessel for mashing and not ton, a unit of measurement. Once again, thanks for the tangent.


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