Double Split Flyback: The age old saying goes “once is good, twice is better” and this statement couldn’t be more true with the A. Lange & Söhne Double-Split Flyback Chronograph. First introduced in 2004, this 2010 updated Lange Double Split is absolutely peerless, because it not only has one, but two rattrapante hands – one for the seconds and one for the minutes to be stopped. What’s more, both chronograph hands and both rattrapante hands are flyback hands.
The intricate complication of a rattrapante sweep-seconds hand in a chronograph has always been a horological accomplishment for short-time measurements. From the very beginning, it was admired as a milestone in precision engineering but it always had its limits. Unfortunately, the possibility of taking a lap-time reading with the rattrapante sweep-seconds hand during an ongoing measurement was restricted to the 60-second scale and therefore would only be able to record two laps less than one minute – until now.
The Double Split Flyback’s 43.2 mm case is made entirely of 18-carat pink-gold, with a silver dial that features two subsidiary dials. At 8 o’clock is the customary running seconds, at 4 o’clock are the chronograph minutes, plus chronograph split minutes and at the very centre is the rattrapante (split-seconds) hands. At 12 o’clock is the power reserve indicator and on the inclined dial flange is the 400 base tachymeter scale. The robust case is fixed to the wrist by a brown leather alligator strap, with matching metal pin-buckle.
At its heart, beats a mechanical self-winding movement developed and produced by A. Lange & Söhne – calibre L001.1 – graced with the kind of meticulous finishes that are the unmistakable signatures of Lange. The Lange Double Split Flyback Chronograph is a thing of pure beauty and with its double rattrapante complication it is a mechanical marvel.
DoubleWood: Located in Dufftown on Speyside, in Scotland and owned by William Grant & Sons – is home to one of the most revered Single Malt Scotch Whisky distillery: The Balvenie. Founded in 1892 The Balvenie is one of the few large Scotch Malt distilleries that still grows its own barley and have kept faith with a traditional malting floor. Master Distiller, David Stewart, over the past 53 years has created some of the most distinctive and beautiful Balvenie expressions. But one of his favourite creations is the DoubleWood maturation. This technique is at the heart of The Balvenie DoubleWood – it sees the whisky matured first in American oak barrels, which impart soft, sweet vanilla notes, before being transferred to European oak sherry casks, where the second cask ageing adds rich, spicy flavours and a depth and fullness of flavour.
Tasting Notes: on the nose: you’ll experience sweet notes of sherry, followed by a warm waft of toffee, marzipan and vanilla. Notes of raisins, spices and a hint of coffee and sulphur closely follow this. After a couple of swirls notes of butterscotch, orange peel, fresh green herbs, aniseed and oak start to emerge. On the palate: those sweet notes of sherry are ever present, followed by toasted almonds and vanilla. Spicy notes will start to filter through, followed by cinnamon, butterscotch, cocoa, a lovely meaty taste and a note akin to rum and raisin ice cream. The finish: is long, sweet, spicy, with lingering zest and oak.
The verdict: The DoubleWood maturation process is one that Balvenie has been producing for years and it is this technique that gives the DoubleWood expression so much character. The 17-year-old DoubleWood is a more mature and mellow version of its younger sibling. It is so well balanced and keeps offering more notes just as often as you keep nosing and sipping it. A drop that didn’t need any water – though if you do need to then only add a very small amount. For me, I found when I left it for a short amount of time to sit in the glass between nosing and tasting – this yielded the best results.
Info: ABV 43% in a 70cl bottle
Photo Credit: Christopher Beccan. For more, please go and visit Bexsonn, Chritopher Beccan’s official website.