Apr 202015
 

Last year, Tomatin began the release of of a “Wood Influence” showcase series for the Cù Bòcan peated whisky, whose standard edition includes whisky matured in sherry, virgin oak and ex bourbon casks. I reviewed the sherry cask release here, and now head into virgin oak territory. It’s refreshing to see what Tomatin is doing with components, as the past half year saw both the release of the first two Cù Bòcan component bottles and the fascinating ‘Cuatro’ series highlighting four different sherry finishes (Fino, Manzanilla, Oloroso and Pedro Ximenez) on the same spirit for three years, after maturing for nine years in ex bourbon casks.

Photo Credit: winetime.ua

Photo Credit: winetime.ua

I’ll start by saying that I generally like virgin oak maturation for scotch whisky, and this edition does not have the new make spirit notes that the sherry matured edition had. Nevertheless, this is still a rather young expression, and I found it rather fruity and sweet, with the peat taking a backseat.

Photo Credit: Tomatin

Photo Credit: Tomatin

Tomatin Cù Bòcan Virgin Oak Edition (46%ABV, NCF, NC)

Appearance: Gold, legs are quick to vanish.

Nose: White bread toast, light smoke, lemon peel, a banana (the fruit itself, without the peel), yellow hay, pineapple, pear and a lot of cereal.

Palate: Light smokiness, lemon, a citrusy-zesty bitterness and a rum like note. The mouth feel is rather thin on this one.

Linger: Top of the throat gets that clean Highland peat, with a dry, light and clean sweetness on the back of the tongue.

Conclusion

I liked this expression better than its sherry counterpart, mainly for the lack of new make notes in it. I would assume the brand new oak is the most active, thus maturing the whisky faster than the already used sherry cask.

Sep 252014
 

With peat being so highly fashionable these days, Highland peat is quite the rage. Ardmore has been doing it for ages, but Glenglassaugh have added the Torfa (as have some Speysiders like Knockdhu’s AnCnoc Rutter, Flaughter and Tushkar as well as BenRiach’s Extensive line of peated whisky) and the Tomatin’s Cù Bòcan line has been rather successful. The Cù Bòcan claim to fame is the triple maturing of the Standard edition (in ex-bourbon, sherry and virgin oak casks). The Sherry Edition highlights the influence of the sherry casks on the lightly peated whisky, and is a 6000 bottle limited edition released this month.

 

Photo Credit: somersetwhisky.com

Photo Credit: somersetwhisky.com

Tomatin Cù Bòcan Sherry Edition (46%ABV, NCF, NC)

Appearance: Gold, legs are quick to vanish.

Nose: New make youngness, malt, peat – the sherry is relatively weak. The signature Tomatin tropical fruit (with notes of mango, papaya and some coconut) begin to come through with mild sherry spices as the peat all but dissipates.

Palate: Peat and papaya with notes of pineapple and mango. The Sherry is almost not a factor, but for the sweetness it gives. There are notes of new make and hints of spice.

Linger: Very short, leaving some sooty peat behind a little longer.

 

Conclusion

This is very young whisky, neither a sherry bomb nor a peat monster. Light is the operative word for this expression.

Taken for what it is, a very young NAS expression – it delivers that promise and is an enjoyable dram. Personally, I really hope Tomatin is taking some of this liquid to keep in the sherry casks for another decade. I think this expression as a 15 or 18 year old would be absolutely fabulous.

This was an official sample sent to Yoav. Thanks for sharing, mate!