WhistlePig 25 Single Malt, The Badönkådonk, balances craft with a hint of whimsy

WhistlePig 25 Single Malt The Badönkådonk
WhistlePig 25 Single Malt The Badönkådonk / WhistlePig

While the name might have drinkers taking a pause, this special release from the boundary pushing WhistlePig distillers is far from a laughing matter. WhistlePig 25 Single Malt, The Badönkådonk is definitely a special liquor worthy to pour in celebrated chalice.

Over the years, WhistlePig has taken a path unlike other distilleries. While the creative campaigns might have brought a few chuckles, those images and phrases never overshadow what really matters, a superb whiskey that impresses even the most discerning palates.

Although bourbon drinkers might reveal in the complexity of America’s spirit, the single malt conversation, specifically the single malt Scotch category, has seen a spark in interest. The deep dive into the resurgence of the Scottish market in the documentary “The Water of Life” showed that the peaty forward liquor is not simple. Even if the recipes might not be passed from distiller to distiller, the willingness to experiment yet not lose site of the past has made the category more exciting.

With the WhistlePig 25 Single Malt, The Badönkådonk, the distiller does not discount the past yet wants to surpass those old-school notions. Before pouring a glass, the campaign to launch this spectacular offering cannot be overlooked.

First and foremost, the name is a little cheeky. The head pig distillers may have dug deep to bring a laugh, but the name might have a nod to a different roundness or fullness of this enjoyment. Some people might not be plucking the guitar strings while sipping on the dram, but it is a fun name to say.

In addition, WhistlePig went all in with a special guest to announce this spirited offering. With the help of John Cleese, the differences between those stodgy Scottish offerings and the American ingenuity is clear. While Cleese once said, “he who laughs most, learns best,” adding the “E” in whiskey might be a nod to the excitement that American distillers bring to the conversation.

What can drinkers expect from WhistlePig 25 Single Malt – The Badönkådonk?

Before even a drop is poured, the stunning packaging sets the expectation for this release. Although no bottle should every collect dust on a shelf, this WhistlePig offering catches the eye. From the taper to how it feels in the hand, it is a reminder that drinking a great single malt should be an experience to savor.

The WhistlePig 25 Single Malt deserves time to open. Whether enjoyed in a specialty whiskey glass or a favorite cut crystal, it needs to sit, rest. Even though there is much anticipation with having that first taste, a few moments of waiting are worth it.

The cask finished single malt used a Silver Oak Alexander Valley Cabernet Sauvignon barrel. While the oaky notes are clear, it is the fruit essence and hint of honey that makes this taste so inviting. The complexity is clear but there is a nod to the familiar. It feels comforting with its vanilla yet exciting with a touch of pear. In some ways, there might be an nod to that “Badönkådonk” juiciness that draws the drinker back to the glass.

Although the aroma sets the tone of the Cabernet Sauvignon’s impact on this special release, it is far from one note. The fruitiness with the oak makes it approachable to even the novice Single Malt drinker.

WhistlePig 25 Single Malt The Badönkådonk
WhistlePig 25 Single Malt The Badönkådonk / WhistlePig

Given that WhistlePig wanted to push the boundaries with this Silver Oak partnership, the WhistlePig 25 Single Malt accomplishes that. More importantly, it is far from being pretentious. It is another impressive offering from a distiller who is never afraid to journey down its own path.

While many people long to enjoy this storied spirit, the price tag puts the bottle in a different category. At $2,000 a bottle, it is an investment. Similar to some other porcine discovered treasures, the expense can be tremendous, but the flavor is worth the money spent.

WhistlePig 25 Single Malt – The Badönkådonk is a limited release, but it will be an annual offering. More information on the whiskey can be found on the distiller’s website.