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The Blenders

sandy pouring blending bottle scaled new aspect ratio 16 9

Meet The Blenders Behind Ballantine’s

The influence of these five master blenders has made Ballantine’s what it is today, Europe’s No.1 Scotch whisky and also No.2 worldwide (*IWSR volume 2018).

Now, Ballantine’s proposes the most comprehensive range of quality aged blended Scotch whiskies available anywhere in the world, and you’ll find it across the globe.


George Ballantine


Our brand is named after our founder George Ballantine – a Scottish grocer who also blended teas for a living. Upon realising the whisky he was buying wasn’t up to scratch, and ever the entrepreneur, George began blending his own whiskies. George was a True Character who followed his own path, and it’s this desire that propelled his whisky to stardom.

George later shared his whisky blending expertise with his sons George II, Archibald and Daniel, as well as his grandson, George III.

In 1895, Ballantine & Son was awarded with a Royal Warrant from Queen Victoria, the ultimate endorsement of the company’s prestigious reputation.

The Ballantine’s family first blended Finest in 1910, and it still stands as the oldest recipe in the current range. Finest is still the most popular in our range, proof that quality lasts the test of time.

george ballantine
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George Robertson


The next master blender was yet another George, although not related to the Ballantine family. He inherited the job after the first world war and 13 years of prohibition, so found himself with barrel upon barrel of matured whisky. George Robertson created the world’s first (and to this day most rewarded) 17 year old Scotch and the prestigious Ballantine’s 30.

ballantines master blender george robertson

Ballantine’s Finest

ballantine's finest bottle

Jack Goudy


Jack carried on the tradition of producing excellence with the introduction of our 12 year old blend. He also trained up two future master blenders, making sure the quality of Ballantine’s would continue for years to come. Jack taught them the importance of sourcing the best scotch and maturing it in the best American oak. Casks of American oak have arrived every year since, maintaining that same high quality and flavour.

ballantines 3rd master blender jack goudy

Robert Hicks


The first of Goudy’s prodigies was Robert Hicks, a perfectionist in the world of whisky. He worked with Jack for 24 years before taking on the role of master blender and was renowned for having one of the best noses when it came to smelling whisky.

ballantines fourth master blender robert hicks

Ballantine’s 12 Year Old


Sandy Hislop


The current master blender and the second of Goudy’s prodigies, Sandy drives innovation on Ballantine’s. As the most prolific of the master blenders, he brought new whisky tastes to the market like Ballantine’s Brasil and Ballantine’s 7 Bourbon Finish. Sandy also added Ballantine’s 40 to the family, the oldest expression ever in the range and something that he is particularly proud of.

With his hands on approach that involves constant observation and nosing around 250 samples a day, Sandy plots the course of Ballantine’s. It’s exciting to see where he’ll take it.

ballantines 5th master blender sandy hislop
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Stay true to your own taste, because the best way to drink Ballantine’s is exactly the way you like it. – Sandy Hyslop


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