Balcones Texas Single Malt Special Release (Batch 1182/1285), 51.2%

Price: $85 Issue: Summer 2012 Reviewer: Lew Bryson

Quite dark brown in the glass, and lots of vanilla and fruit — white grapes, pear — in the nose, with a sweet, clean floral character as well; a rich nose. Vibrant with malt and vanilla in the mouth, rather hot without water, and shot through with oakspice, which dominates the finish, though the vanilla struggles through. Water helps the heat in the middle, but not the finish. Texas is pretty darned hot!