Tomatin Single Malt Whisky Tasting

FACT: Tomatin was once the biggest spirit producing distillery in Scotland, with 25 stills producing over 15 million litres of spirit.

The huge expansion of Tomatin between the years of 1954 and 1970 was largely due to huge demand for its fruity, sweet liquid, ideal for the blended Whisky market.  With such a reliable taste profile all the big players in the blended whisky market were hungry for Tomatin. Unfortunately the recession of the early 80’s saw the demand for blended whisky plummet and with it went the Tomatin power house, and in 1984 it eventually fell into administration. BUT in 1985 the distillery was purchased by Takara Shuzo Corp. and after reducing the yearly production to a manageable 2.5 million litres using 12 stills, this distillery is now producing much more spirit for single malt production rather than blend, while still staying true to its popular taste profile.


The current core range is Tomatin Legacy, Tomatin 12, Tomatin 15, Tomatin 18 and Tomatin 30. Last night at Glasgsow Whisky Club I had the pleasure of tasting all of these presented by Tomatin Brand Ambassador, Alistair Mutch. Below are my tasting notes:

Tomatin Legacy | 43% Vol | Unaged
Nose: Oil and waxy, wicket basket, fresh cotton balls, empty corn flakes box, lemon puff biscuits
Taste: Aniseed spice, sugar puffs, lemon puffs, custard creams and sweet fresh vanilla pods.

Tomatin 12 | 40% Vol | 12 Year Old
Nose: Aromatics, odd-fellows, pear juice, lemon meringue pie
Taste: bitter black chocolate caramel, champagne truffle, vanilla, golden syrup porridge with raisins

Tomatin 15 | 43% Vol | 15 Year Old
Nose: pineapple cubes, green apple skins, cinnamon sugar dusting, desicated coconut and lilt
Taste: pepper drying, bright green apples, white pepper, lemon and lime juice, grassy, fresh pine needles

Tomatin 18 | 46% Vol | 18 Year Old
Nose: plasticine, clay, juicy fruits, black forest gateau, warm rice pudding and blackcurrant jam, Dr. Pepper, burnt raisins
Taste: hot ginger syrup, crystallised ginger, aniseed fudge, plump juicy prunes

Tomatin 30 | 46% Vol | 30 Year Old
Nose: can of fruit cocktail, orange ice lolly, orange ice pole, freshly peeled tangerines
Taste: orange sherbet, raspberry slushy, tangerines, orange sponge cake, Cointreau, passion fruit sorbet, mango puree

My favorites of the night were the Tomatin 15yo and the 30yo, I must confess I haven’t tasted a dram quite like the 30yo in a long time, it is a unique, mouth watering, delicious, big orangey dram, absolutely worth a try.

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1 Response

  1. Thanks for your cool blog and tasting notes on Tomatin. It’s not a whisky that I’ve tried much, but I’ll need to give it try after reading your notes on it. Thanks again.

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