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Tomatin - "The Softer Side of the Highlands"

I really had a tough time searching for a title here, so I stole their marketing line. Not going to hide that from you all. Sue me.

Scotch Profile

Brand Name: Tomatin 12 year/Tomatin 18 year

Distillery Name: Tomatin

Region: Highlands

Sub-Region: None?

ABV: 43%/46%

Aging Casks: Sherry and Bourbon/Traditional Oak

Finishing Casks: None/Oloroso Sherry

Coloring Use: Yes/Yes

Flavor Notes

Tomatin 12

Aroma: dough, raisins, vanilla, marzipan, baking spices, grassy

Palate: honey, chocolate, lemon zest, and lesser hints of caramel and burnt sugar

Finish: just as the finish develops, I get sherry, then a short finish of malt, oak, fresh grass, and the marzipan returns. The finish is drier than the aroma leads with and the palate, which is a nice way to wrap up this single malt. It makes it very drinkable

Final Thoughts:

This is a fantastic scotch for both the price ($33 - $38) and the quality. The finish drops out in a way that might disappoint a seasoned scotch drinker, but that works to the benefit of Tomatin 12 in terms of approachability. It makes it easy to come back to your glass seeking flavors in the palate, while letting the aromas lead you to them. 43% keeps things interest

Tomatin 18

Aroma: grape, sherry, vanilla fudge, apple skin, clove

Palate: raisin, wood, cocoa powder, great creamy body here, malt notes too. Some spice hints that trail into the finish.

Finish: very dry. Wood tannins maintain a presence underneath dried fruit notes and some malt vanilla and hints of baking spice.

Final Thoughts:

A slightly heavy-handed example of wood playing a key role in a single malt scotch's flavor profile, there's still a lot to enjoy here. The body and the way the aroma leads into a very robust and malty palate make for an outstanding combo, and the dry but lingering finish is a pleasant surprise. Spice notes from the barrel give it a touch of complexity that it needs more of. Great purchase for a more conservative single malt drinker who likes some of the classic 18 year olds.

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