Tomatin is a bit of a guilty Highland pleasure to be honest. Since walking through the entire range a couple of years ago we have become big fans of this distillery. They have a full and diverse range, and an ever increasing, but incredibly complimentary, amount of new releases and special additions that sit nicely in the portfolio without stealing the focus from the members already there.
Indeed we think so highly of the whisky that we even featured it on our stand at the Birmingham Whisky Festival for the second year in a row – and our choice of Legacy (a no aged statement whisky at one of the most competitive prices you will see) and Cu Bocan did not disappoint; indeed our only regret was not having more as we ran out late afternoon meaning Mike and I had none to enjoy at home!
Cu Bocan was one of our highlights of last year, so much so that I have a bottle at home, the combination of light smoke and peat over the Tomatin spirit was a real winner in our view and so we were delighted and intrigued to see the announcment of a limited cask strength release of the whisky. Tomatin found three bourbon casks resting at the back of the warehouse from 7 June 1989, and even more excitingly than that they were made from peated spirit! The result is an extremely limited release of 1080 bottles at 53.2% – a release that can never be repeated. These three casks were all that remained and my word it is good stuff!
Tomatin 1989 Cu Bocan [53.2%]
I really enjoyed the original Cu Bocan that is widely available, but this whisky is something else – big, brash, and hot with a good dose of peat. Definitely Cu Bocan in ultra HD.
Nose: Huge amounts of vanilla and spice. Very warming with hints of ginger and chilli flakes mixed with black pepper. And then the smoke comes – wafts of peaty smoke combined with red fruits. An earthy and grassy fragrance that is magnificent
Palate: A thick and cloying whisky that changes over time. Incredibly complex with peat striking the palate in waves, alternating with mint and liquorice. There is a definite damp note that reminds me on Islay warehouses before notes of peach offer some lightness to the mouth. A hot, hot whisky
Finish: Hot and long; the whisky is very dry and the peat really shines through here. The smoke sticks, giving way slightly to some sweetness, and then more heat. Superb.
An excellent whisky. And it is still available here from The Whisky Exchange, although I suspect it won’t hang around for long!