Click through to view William Grant & Sons The Balvenie Fifty

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William Grant & Sons' The Balvenie Fifty

Category – Spirits, whisky, Scotch, single malt

Available – From this week

Location – UK, specific details not released

Price – RRP of GBP20,000 (US$31,825) per bottle

William Grant & Sons has launched a limited edition expression of its The Balvenie single malt Scotch whisky brand. The Balvenie Fifty, which was distilled in 1962, has been released to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Balvenie's master distiller, David Stewart.

The expression will be limited to 88 bottles.

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It’s rare to find someone in any field who has devoted 50 years to mastering their craft, but David Stewart, known throughout the Scotch industry as the ‘modest man of whisky’,  has dedicated his entire working life to the art of single malt making, becoming one of the most respected craftsmen in his field. He began working at The Balvenie Distillery in 1962 – a year before single malt whisky was officially exported outside Scotland and served a lengthy 12 year apprenticeship before taking on the title of malt master.

This incredible devotion is being recognized, exactly 50 years to the day that David joined the highland distillery as a 17-year-old apprentice, with the release of a rare cask of The Balvenie single malt distilled in 1962. Just 88 bottles of The Balvenie Fifty will be available, with an RRP of £20,000 per bottle.

One of just a handful of malt masters in Scotland, David has an incredible natural talent for reading whisky with his nose and palate and during his career David estimates that he has nosed over 400,000 whisky casks. Also recognised as being behind some of Scotch whisky’s greatest innovations, David’s commitment to retaining traditional techniques as well as championing groundbreaking new methods have earned him some of the industry’s most notable accolades. Bestowed a lifetime achievement award in 2005 by a distinguished panel of experts from the International Wine and Spirits Competition, That year David was also awarded the Grand Prix of Gastronomy by the British Academy of Gastronomes.

Commenting on the release of The Balvenie Fifty, David Stewart said: “Cask 5576 and I have shared the last five decades together at The Balvenie Distillery and as single malt making is as much art and alchemy as precise science, the interaction between wood and maturing whisky means each cask will produce something entirely unique. It’s true to say I have a dream job and I’ve been privileged to taste a lot of  wonderful whisky in my time, but it’s a great delight to discover how after half a century this unique cask has turned out a truly special single malt.”

The Balvenie Fifty was matured in a European oak sherry hogshead, rarely used today in whisky making. Filled with newly distilled spirit in 1962, over the following 50 years, while David Stewart committed himself to perfecting his craft, the spirit slowly matured into an outstanding single malt Scotch whisky. The particularly long maturation has created a wonderful fragrant and floral whisky, which is velvety sweet with a beautifully balanced combination of sweet citrus notes and gentle hints of honey, spice and oak.


Original source: Company Release