Signatory Vintage for Spec’s Texas Balmenach 28 Year (1988)

Scotch Whisky Review #382: Signatory Vintage for Spec’s Texas Balmenach 28 Year (1988)

Distillery: Balmenach.

Bottler: Signatory Vintage.

Region: Speyside.

Age: 28 Year. Distilled in November 9th, 1988 and bottled on May 19th, 2017.

ABV: 46.0%.

Cask Number: 3247.

Price: Sample courtesy of /u/cagliostro9. $157 for a bottle.

Color: 0.5, Yellow Gold. Natural Color and Non-Chill Filtered.


Nose: It is quite herbal and aromatic from the start. I picked out notes of thyme, rosemary, and sage. There are some citrus notes in the form of lemons and orange rind/essential oils. Some wild honey finishes things off.

Palate: It has quite an oily mouthfeel. Orange essential oil is what I get first as far as flavors. There’s a strong, heavy, gas kinda note that I associate with worm tub whiskies. Rosemary syrup and sugar water also peep in. As you go down the glass, notes of a dry cider and malted milk biscuits come out as well.

Finish: Long and quite heavy. Roasted malt and roasted barley tea are the most prominent notes. Toasted nuts and malted milk biscuits also.


Conclusion: In my never-ending quest to try every distillery, this Signatory Vintage bottling of Balmenach was my introduction to this Speyside distillery. I have to say, it’s set a pretty darn high bar. It is absolutely delicious. The nose welcomes you with loads of herbal and aromatic notes topped off with some citrus. The palate is quite oily and brings through those herbal and citrus notes to life. The cider and malted milk biscuit notes keep you coming back for more. There is a nice heft to it that adds another element of depth as well. The finish is long and sits on the tongue seemingly forever. All in all, this is incredibly tasty and I’m a bit worried this bottle will disappear faster than I’d like it to.

Final Score: 87.


Scotch Whisky Review #382, Speyside Review #138, Whisky Network Review #536


Scoring Legend:

  • 96-100: The perfect dram, nectar of the gods.
  • 90-95: Near perfect, there is something truly special about this whisky.
  • 85-89: Amazing, will always try to keep a bottle of this in my collection (if feasible).
  • 80-84: Very Good, maybe only one minor nitpick about the whisky keeping it here.
  • 75-79: Good, quite enjoyable to drink.
  • 70-74: Solid, wouldn’t go out of my way to get it.
  • 60-69: Meh, still drinkable.
  • Below 59: If you have a bottle of this, start cooking with it instead.

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