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Tamdhu Batch Strength / Batch No 2

Tamdhu for Easter

7 1190

@talexanderReview by @talexander

30th Mar 2018

1

  • Nose
    22
  • Taste
    24
  • Finish
    22
  • Balance
    22
  • Overall
    90

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Tamdhu is another distillery that until now has evaded my rapier pen. This Speyside distillery was founded in 1896 and lies between Cardhu and Knockando. It's quite large with nine pine washbacks and three pairs of stills. After closing it in 2010, Edrington sold it to Ian Macleod Distillers (who just bought Rosebank) who revived the lagging brand in 2012 (having traditionally been used almost solely by blenders).

This is Batch 2 of their Batch Strength expression, matured solely in sherry casks (with a lot of first-fill) and is non-coloured and un-chlllfiltered.

The colour is a coppery, reddish gold. Classic sherry bomb on the nose, with stewed prunes, blackberry compote, melted chocolate and wood polish. Cayenne pepper. A hint of ginger. Blood orange. Lime pith. High-quality maraschino. Slightly vegetal, and very umami. With water you get hazelnuts and wood smoke. This is big fat sherry all the way, and not as much of a bruiser as you would think.

The palate is not as hot as expected, with all the notes you find on the nose, but with more ginger and assorted herbs. Nutty. Lightly syrupy. Angostura. Smoked paprika. Water brings out more spice, and finally reveals the malt under all that cask influence. Really delicious!

The long finish is dusty with mouth-puckering tannins, vanilla, paprika and fino sherry (no idea if there were specifically fino casks involved though, that's just the note I'm getting). I'm hit-and-miss on sherry bombs (love my A'bunadh, not so much the many sulphur beasts out there) but this checks all the right boxes while avoiding the wrong boxes. Water is really your friend here; this is a thirsty one! Reached #8 on Whisky Advocate's Top Whiskies of 2017, scoring a 93. My only complaint is the packaging, which features "old-tyme" lettering describing those who made this spirit as "A Co. of Gentlemen, Merchants and Purveyors of The 'Can-Dhu-Spirit'" Ugh.

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11 comments

@RianC
RianC commented

@talexander - "The 'Can-Dhu-Spirit" = Sprite, right?

. . . I'll get me coat

3 months ago 2Who liked this?

@Nozinan
Nozinan commented

Gotta love "Batch strength" - whatever that means...

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

@BlueNote
BlueNote commented

I really like the standard 10 year old at 43%. It's a pretty good example of a sherry cask matured single malt. I agree, the bullshit on the packaging is over the top, but the bottle is a real beauty. I missed a chance to try the cask strength version when my friend's bottle was apparently a victim of the evaporation that @paddockjudge has referred to. wink

3 months ago 2Who liked this?

@murrayaitken
murrayaitken commented

How odd, just last night I tasted this one for the first time. Do agree on all your points - quite spot on. Thanks saved me from writing same.

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

Expand image
@talexander
talexander commented

@Nozinan They can't call it "cask strength" because it's more than one cask, so instead it's "batch strength". Same idea, though.

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

@OdysseusUnbound
OdysseusUnbound commented

@talexander Correct me if I’m wrong but not all Cask Strength releases are Single Cask whiskies, right?

3 months ago 2Who liked this?

@talexander
talexander commented

@OdysseusUnbound Yeah, that makes sense too. Geez, I dunno. Maybe they mean the same thing. So confoosing!

3 months ago 2Who liked this?

Astroke commented

I don't care what they call it, I love the stuff :)

Great review.

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

@talexander
talexander commented

@Astroke Thanks! I was gonna write another review or two today, but the day got away from me, and now my girlfriend is making West Indian food so my nose / palate will be all over the place.....so maybe tomorrow.

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

@Megawatt
Megawatt commented

@RianC

Not sure if you're aware but the bottle actually says that.

3 months ago 0

@Megawatt
Megawatt commented

@talexander

Batch strength is just their own term. It doesn't mean anything, aside from denoting that it is a small-batch, cask-strength malt (just like a'bunadh).

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

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