In a recent batch of samples I received was this wee baby. A 17 year old Tobermory and a single cask. Time for Tobermory to prove itself, since I am not a fan of their usual output. The 15 year old that they released a few years ago was fine enough, but their regular 10 year old I found undrinkable. Actually, after a glass or two I gave the bottle away to someone who did enjoy it.
Fairly heavy on the nose with clear bourbon cask influences. Not too typically Tobermory with light smoke, earthiness, salt and some bitter caramel. Old wood too. Fairly complex and nice, but not incredibly special.
Sharp and salty at first with lots of chili pepper, wood. It bites. There’s a greasy quality too and some vanilla, bitter caramel again. Some spicy lemon comes along later.
The finish is a bit more friendly but still rather heavy for what I expected. Wood, simple syrup, vanilla, caramel, butterscotch. The bitterness lingers.
It’s better than I expected, but that wasn’t too hard. However, I’m not thrilled by it. The complexity is there, the flavours are there but it takes quite a while to open up. After half an hour the nose becomes more and more lovely with more vanilla cream showing itself. Still, a good but not spectacular whisky. At € 71 it’s very affordable though, especially for a single cask at cask strength. That doesn’t happen all too much anymore.
Tobermory 17, 57%, Master of Malt, available in their shop for £ 59.95 and a sample costs £ 4.85.
Official sample provided by Master of Malt.