Whisky of the Week

Meandering the world, one whisky at a time

Tag: Balblair Distillery

Catto’s Blended Rare Old Scottish whisky

Catto s Blended Rare Old Scottish whisky header Catto’s

The next edition in my affordable blended whisky series; this week I look at the Catto’s Blended Rare Old Scottish whisky.  It retails for around R 300.  Is is affordable and still under R500, but not cheap.  It is in the same price range as the Johnnie Walker Black.  Catto is part of the International Beverage Ltd company who’s Single malt portfolio include Old Pulteney, Balblair, anCnoc and Speyburn. 

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Hankey Bannister 12 yo blended whisky

Hankey Bannister 12 yo blended whisky

I have seen the brand Hankey Bannister around for a few years, but nothing really enticed me to try it. That was until John was invited to a Hankey Bannister tasting at Bogeta in Parkhurst. The beautiful little restaurant is owned by Saverio and has an impressive collection of whiskies.  Margaret Clarke, the Senior Brand Manager came to SA to introduce this blended Scottish whisky, to whisky lovers.   She not only had the Hankey Bannister 12 yo and 25 yo available to taste, but also shared the rare Hankey Bannister 40 yo release with them.

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Balblair 2000 Vintage Single Malt

Balblair 2000 vintage single malt whisky

A month or so ago, I got invited to join Paul laCock from Aficionados and a few fellow tweeters for a Balblair Twitter tasting (BalblairTT). The range we tried included the Balblair 90, Balblair 03 and the one I liked the most, the Balblair 1999. The Balblair 1999 was a real “sit down and think of life” dram. Rich, fruity sweet, full-bodied…. Delicious! It made me realize that, although we have made quite a dent in our own bottle of Balblair and photographed it extensively, I have never captured the tasting notes or written about it. So here goes, the Balblair 2000 release.

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Whisky & Royal Ashton cheese pairing

Whisky and Royal Ashton Cheese pairing

In 1993, quotas was imposed on milk production and this forced Eckhard Leicher from La Montanara to look for a new way of selling the surplus milk. He attended a cheese making course and started making cheese on a small-scale. In 1999, the cheesery was upgraded and today the cheese making business has taken over from  farming.

La Montanara is situated at the foot of the Langeberg mountains, between Ashton and Swellendam. This region, has a micro climate ideally suited for dairy-farming.

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Top 5 single malts under R500

Top 5 Single Malts

A couple of days ago, a friend asked for some advice. She needed to buy whisky as a gift but did not know where to start. Walking into a bottle store can be a daunting experience. The sheer volume of products available make choosing tough. And knowing what whisky is worth buying within a smallish budget can be doubly difficult. And she needed to impress with something exceptional.

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