The Hive 12 Years Old Blended Malt (Wemyss Malts)

40% ABV, RRP £35 for 70cl

Score 64/100

What they say: Wemyss’ blended malt range, which also includes Spice King and Peat Chimney, has names inspired by each whisky’s natural flavours and aromas so that the consumer can easily understand the style of whisky being purchased. The Hive is named after the honeyed sweetness found on the palate of this whisky. Each of these blended malts represents one of the key Scotch malt regions. The Hive is for the Speyside region, Spice King for the Highlands and Peat Chimney for Islay. As with the rest of the Wemyss Malts range, these blended malt whiskies have been developed in conjunction with the Scotch expert and writer Charlie Maclean and are bottled at 40% ABV.

To see what Charles Maclean has to say about it watch it here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=42FhBzYfk5Q&feature=youtu.be

To mark the launch of The Hive, the 12 years old blended malt range has been repackaged into new premium gift tins, and the bottle labels have also been redesigned for this launch. The new packaging features bold and striking designs, with quirky details to denote each expression; all in all delivering excellent shelf standout. The Hive and the rest of the newly re-packaged 12 years old range will be available from August 2011 in Travel Retail, EU, Asian and Australasian markets.

William Wemyss, Managing Director of Wemyss Malts, commented “We continue to strive to bring accessible whiskies to the market and are taking this opportunity to refresh our range of premium blended malts with an excellent new product called The Hive and striking new gift tins across the 12 years old range.”

What I say: I bought a 5cl miniature of this for £6 from Villeneuve wines [http://www.villeneuvewines.com/] in Peebles, as I had been dying to try something from Wemyss malts for awhile and was intrigued with an all malt blended whisky. Also my Fiancé is madly passionate about Bees [I should know being 2 B’s myself!] and really wanted the bottle when I was finished with it. Lastly I though it would be nice to celebrate Wemyss Malts recent membership into the Fife chamber of commerce.

My initial reaction was ‘too sweet’ and too blended i.e. difficult to pick out individual tastes. However, after a few sips, more and more revealed itself and the initially cloying sweetness faded away. On the last sip it suddenly hit me – there is a minute hint of something peated in here, cleverly hidden under all the rest.

Colour: Soft golden honey

Nose: Sweet [ester] wood polish like carnauba wax, citrus blossom and honeysuckle

Taste: Citrus notes like grapefruit and apple, sweet and cloying initially, round and full bodied eventually like rhubarb with custard. Faint hint of peat smoke.

Finish: Slightly bitter like coffee or dark chocolate, with a metallic coppery tang that leads into a tongue-tingling warmth

Would I buy it again: In the end I admired this malt blend for what it is, it is certainly interesting and I would recommend anyone try it. The sweetness is not to my taste and I am glad I didn’t buy a full-sized bottle of this. However I do have a huge admiration for Wemyss Malts and would definitely pursue buying more from them, in particular their single malts.

Don’t take my word for it:

Wemyss The Hive 12 Year Old Scotch Review

http://www.tomswhiskyreviews.com/review.php?articleid=127

The Hive 12 Year Old (Wemyss Malts)