The Balvenie Tun 1401 (Batch #5), 50.1%

Price: $250 Issue: Winter 2012 Reviewer: Dave Broom

So soon? This latest release of what is becoming a legendary series mixes nine casks—four butts, five hoggies—from between 1966 and 1990. Hugely complex and obviously mature, it is one to sit and smell forever. Marzipan, mocha, pain au chocolat, manuka honey; every sniff reveals another aroma. It opens into cigar, sandalwood, citrus, and ripe black fruits. The palate is equally layered and expansive. It takes water, but only a drop, for that density is all-important.