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Tomnavoulin is a village in Speyside of which the name is Gaelic for ‘mill on the hill’. That is also where Tamnavulin Distillery got her name from. It is a very young distillery in fact, founded only in 1966 for the purpose of producing whisky for the renewed demand for blends. Mostly for Whyte & Mackay, but also for Crawfords and Mackinlay’s. The bottler A.D. Rattray from Glasgow released this single cask from 1989 a few years ago.
The nose is light on loads of grain, apple peelings, grass and blank wood. From the spice rack I remember ginger and cinnamon. Slowly but surely some citrus fruit shines through, but I cannot yet say which one it is. Honey kicks in, somewhat belatedly. The nose takes its time. With water it becomes more fruity and less woody, which I think is an advantage.
Nice fully body, creamy and spicy. Cloves, vanilla and honey come first, then the grain, grass and some heather. The fruit is pushed away somewhat, but apples do appear. Mildly alcoholic. Well, it is 57,4% ABV after all. Diluted, however, it becomes sweeter and more fruity, but also gets something like bubblegum and floral notes, almost perfumy.
The finish is long, spicy and drying.
The nose can do with a good drop of water, but this is not helpful on the palate. A hard whisky to fathom, but a very interesting Tamnavulin, no doubt about it.