Kininvie Hazelwood Reserve 17yo bottled at 52.5%

Speyside region – 52.5%ABV – £650

Who in the who is Kininvie?!  If you’re an American, chances are, this is a very valid question.

Kininvie is a distillery owned by William Grant & Sons (same folks that own The Balvenie, Glenfiddich, Hudson Real American Whiskey, Tullamore Dew, Grant’s blend and a few other whiskies & spirits companies).  Kininvie is one of the key components in the Monkey Shoulder vatted malt, I mean, blended malt whisky.

It’s pretty rare that the Kininvie distillery releases a single malt.  In fact, I think there have only been about 3 or 4 bottlings to date (Mr. Sammy Simmons, if you see this post, feel free to correct me here…).  So, when they do release a single malt, being the rare birds that they are, you can imagine that they’d command a high price like the one given here (£650!!)

A big thanks goes out to Marshall N and a few others at the LASC for getting me this sample!  These guys are always treating me to some fine stuff and they need to be thanked.  So, consider yourselves thanked (and expect some more thanks down the road).

Matured in first fill sherry (type of sherry is unknown to me) casks – let’s taste this one…

On the nose — Here we have all things one might associate with autumn – roasted nuts right off the county fair nut kiosk.

Carrot cake less the cream cheese frosting.

Dried fruits (apricot, sugar dried dates) and brazil nuts (N.V.T.S., NVTS!).

French vanilla latte with a cinnamon dusting on the frothy head.

Very drying nose – some woody influence here as well.

On the mouth — Intensely drying entry that makes the mouth water to counteract the dry.

Fresh cocoa beans.  Spicy, woody and now even more spice.

A touch of orange peel and also a lot of what I got on the nose.

Creme brule, burnt sugary top and all.

Finish — A touch of clove, vanilla a sugared carrots

In sum —  Insanely lucky to have had a chance to taste this stuff.  All of the scents and flavors did a good job of playing to the yearly Fall-Fever I get (most people get Spring-Fever, I get Fall-Fever…).  The one detractor I found in it was the dry attack right from the get-go which affected the mouthfeel.  This aside, the smells and flavors were so, so nice.  Good luck finding a bottle!  I’ve found a source with The Whisky Exchange: they’re both rare & expensive (£650!!)

In the end, this made me really want some Balvenie 21 Portwood (one of my faves) so, I poured a bit, relaxed and discovered that life can be good.

One thought on “Kininvie Hazelwood Reserve 17yo bottled at 52.5%”

  1. Lucky to get a taste…I’ve been eyeing that bottle at TWE but there is just no way I can justify that price. Thanks for the vicarious journey through the tasting. I’ll open a bottle of portwood and be happy.

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