I long knew that Tomatin was a value brand. Inexplicably, I never tried it. I should have. I’m Mr. Value. You have to be in this age of inflated whisky prices. Back when I first got into whisky, you could score Jameson 18 for $70, Glenlivet 18 for $80, Chivas Regal 18 for $60, even Macallan 18 was $118. None of those bottles can be found at those prices today, unfortunately, and the best I can do is buy my bottle of Evan Williams Black and hang out in my basement, waiting out the storm for when things calm back down. Happily so, I can also sit in a corner in my basement with a bottle of Tomatin 18, apparently.
Owned by Takara Shuzo Corp., Tomatin Distillery resides in the small village of Tomatin, south of Inverness in the Highland region of Scotland. They have 12 stills producing around 5 million liters annually, yet only 20% of their output is bottled as a single malt. Today’s 18 year old boasts a finishing period of 2.5 years in oloroso sherry butts, no small time period. Priced extremely well at $75-80 and bottled at 46%, you almost root for a bottle like this, as no one is trying to rip you off when you pick it up at the store. Let’s see what we got…
Nose- Fruity. Shocking, I know, with raisins and dates, blackberries. Quite ripe and rich. Floral rose petals. Nice vanilla sweetness with apples and honeyed heather. Hints of pepper and smoke.
Taste- Medium body. Lovely spices and oak. Largely a repeat of the nose with leather and tobacco added in with some nice chocolate.
Finish- Quite the fruit show now (which also is a good description of our meetings). The sweet fades a bit. Spicy and long. Oaky.
Comment- Lovely. Tomatin has long been a good buy for the money, and we will be sticking with that assessment. Great balance all around and nice flavors. A nice pour on a Saturday night. Or any night.
SWC Rating- 88/100
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