Balcones “1” Texas Single Malt Whisky Classic Edition Batch 15-3

Balcones “1” Texas Single Malt Whisky Classic Edition 53% alcohol, batch SM 15-3, bottled 3/10/15.  This is made from 100% malted barley, thus a single malt, just like our friends in Scotland.

Despite my extreme displeasure with the Balcones Baby Blue, I thought it only fair to try them one more time.  Unfortunately I should have gone with my initial impression and not given them a second chance.

Color is very attractive dark Amber, no age statement on the bottle, but certainly looks 5-7 years.

Nose: The first whiff smacks me with alcohol, just like the Baby Blue, again with a young whiskey potency to it.  I go again and get a little bit of rotted apples, sawdust, raisin bran and hot asphalt. My initial reaction is that I’m a bit bummed I spent $75 on this.  There is just too much piercing heat on the nose for a 53% aged whiskey of what is supposed to be high quality.

Will the palate will redeem my purchase?  No.  The taste is better than the smell, and there is a bit of oily consistency to it that lingers, but not in a way that I’m really enjoying.  I do get some baking spices and butterscotch on the finish, but more heat than anything. I need to add some water.

Adding a few drops of distiller\d water makes the experience a little more bearable, but not yet enjoyable.

If you are looking for a single malt whisk(e)y, there exist dozens of scotches at much lower price points that are far more enjoyable than this. Perhaps I should rate Macallan 12 soon… As it never disappoints.  Overall this isn’t that bad of a whiskey, and if it was only $15, I might even have granted a fair rating. But given all the accolades and awards and crazy high scores, not to mention how much I paid for this, the expectations were just higher. I’m giving this a score of 75/100 and I’d like my money back.

Who continues to rate these guys so highly and award them double golds and 95s?  Perhaps the Emperor has no clothes?



4 thoughts on “Balcones “1” Texas Single Malt Whisky Classic Edition Batch 15-3

  1. Interesting, and I must say I haven’t had this whisky in some time, especially not since Tate left. The price of their whiskies has gotten more expensive, too. I’ll have to try a more recent batch if I see it at a local bar. I can say I rather enjoyed their original batches.


  2. I’ve never had their old stuff… like the name on my blog says, I’m a new bourbon drinker, so just getting into it. Perhaps Balcones is still coasting on the coat tails of Tate long gone…. or maybe a lot of it wasn’t that good to begin with, or just not in the last few years. Maybe that’s why he left? The only two bottles that I have had of their stuff felt like they were rushed to market and needed many years more in the barrel to settle down. Would be a shame if the investors forced to market early product that in the right amount of time could have been quite good.


  3. This has always been the Balcones style. I find Balcones whiskies tend to drink very hot, whatever the proof. Definitely not my style, seems more reminiscent of wood extract than whiskey.


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