Ballantine’s 12-Year-Old is a blended Scotch whisky, and one of the youngest age-statement expressions belonging to the core range from the house of Ballantine’s.
The Ballantine’s brand is one of the world’s highest selling blended Scotch whiskies although the brand also produces a few expressions of single-malt whiskies such as the Ballantine’s Miltonduff, Ballantine’s Glenburgie and the Ballantine’s Glentauchers.
The Ballantine’s brand was established by George Ballantine in 1827 when he ventured into the whisky blending business at the age of nineteen. He was later joined in the business by his sons, George II, Archibald and Daniel Ballantine, and later by his grandson, George Ballantine III.
Together, three generations of the Ballantine’s family poured in their efforts into turning the whisky blending business into a success, earning a Royal Warrant from the court of Queen Victoria in 1895.
The iconic Ballantine’s square bottle was made such in order to help whisky lovers to sneak in their favorite blended Scotch whisky home during times of Prohibition.
One of the earliest and still produced blends from Ballantine’s was the Finest, and their malt whiskies generally come in from the Miltonduff and Glenburgie distilleries, whereas the Dumbarton distillery supplied the grain whisky for Ballantine’s blends. The Dumbarton was replaced by the Strathclyde as Ballantine’s grain whisky producer as the former was mothballed in 2002.
The Ballantine’s 12-year-old too is based on the Miltonduff and Glenburgie malt whiskies, with several other malt and grain whiskies added in to achieve the signature taste that the brand has come to be known by.
Jack Goudy, Ballantine’s Master Blender since 1959 is credited with creating the Ballantine’s 12 Year Old, and going a step further to train his successors, ensuring the secrets of the blend lived on.
Ballantine’s 12 is produced by blending together more than fifty source whiskies with the Miltonduff and Glenburgie supplying the blueprint for the magnificent blend. The youngest whisky used in the blend is at least 12 year old, although the Ballantine’s 12 year old does contain some older whiskies.
The Ballantine’s 12 year old blended Scotch whisky carries an alcohol strength of 40% ABV, the permissible limit for Scotch whiskies per the legal requirements.
Gold medal at The Scotch Whisky Masters in the Blended: Under 12 Years category in 2015.
Gold medal at The Scotch Whisky Masters in the Blended: Under 12 Years category in 2013.
Silver at The Scotch Whisky Masters in the Blended: Under 12 Years category in 2018.
Silver Outstanding at the International Wine & Spirits Competition in the Scotch Whisky: Blended category in 2014.
Silver Outstanding at the International Wine & Spirits Competition in the Scotch Whisky: Blended category in 2013.
Silver at the International Wine & Spirits Competition in the Scotch Whisky: Deluxe Blend category in 2017.
Sweet, with hints of honey, vanilla and oak.
Creamy, complex with traces of sweet honey, and floral flavors.
Long, sweet with some spiciness.