Whisky Connosr
Shop Join

Tomintoul 16 Year Old

Suck on a lemon instead

1 779

RReview by @Rigmorole

8th Aug 2013


Tomintoul 16 Year Old
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

Show rating data charts

Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

The nose is rancid and sharp: I am getting an overriding sense of apple cider vinegar and lemon rinds. The palate is better with warm barley malt, hay, grass . . . ah heck, I can't go on . . . this stuff is a sorry excuse for a single malt scotch in this age and price range. Don't buy it unless you can get it for less than $40 (American dollar).

I would much rather drink The MacTarnahan (9 year Glenfarclas with fake coloring and merely oak casks with nothing to season the wood) and The Mac costs $30 here in Oregon. It's called the "Modern Spirit." Nice one. Well, it's not bad for the money. A far cry better than this bottle of Tomintoul 16 that I've got open on my desk as I type these words.

I opened it yesterday, so it's fairly new to the world of fresh air. If it improves with oxidation as the level goes down, I will amend my dreary verdict here. This will be my "offer to the scotch heathen" guests bottle. They will see the 16 Year on the label and feel privileged. Me? I would rather drink a dram of Mac 9 mixed with a smidge of Longrow Gaja Barolo. It mixes shockingly well together and costs a good deal less than this Tomintoul.

So . . . you might be wondering why I am so blunt tonight in my review. Well, my next door neighbor brought her dog over to my front porch and the bloody fleas from that neurotic hair ball crept into my house! It's a first for me. I've never had any trouble before. My dog, named Islay, by the way, is a Basenji without an undercoat, so there isn't much hair for a flea to hide in.

At present, they are trying to colonize her hide! Good gracious, now my poor dog, my wife and myself are suffering from the horrors of a minor infestation. I needed a respite from this madness and all I got was a bottle of sour malt and the accompanying winces that go with it, especially at a price tag of $75 (American dollars).

Tonight, I took my little book down from the book shelf that I packed back from Tate Gallery in London when I was 19 in the Year of Our Lord 1987. I do admire the watercolor entitled, "Ghost of a Flea." Gazing upon the strangeness of that grimoire of a printed acid etching plate with watercolors atop the etching is more satisfying than choking down this vinegary dram of Tomintoul 16.

At any rate, here's toasting to your good health, and pest free lives, fellow drammers. Better luck than yours truly at Ye Olde Liquor Store, eh. . . .

Related Tomintoul reviews


Rigmorole commented

This one is improving a little. Time and oxygen are helping.

10 years ago 0

maltster commented

@Rigmorole, I had a tasting of the Tomintoul Range some weeks ago and most of the stuff was instantly forgettable - except the 14 yo which was a nice surprise. I liked it very much and it offered way more quality and oomph than the rest of the range...maybe because in the land of the blind the one- eyed is king but I will definitely give it a go and I would recommend you to do the same ( with the 14yo).

10 years ago 0

MaltActivist commented

hahaha I can't get the image of a flea-infested mutt going crazy at your door while you stand there looking horrified. I am sorry, my friend, you had to go through that. Hope the bastard fleas meet their untimely demise soon and vacate soon.

Thanks for the heads up on the Tomintoul. I have a 14 year old which I haven't opened - I might after reading your review just to see. I've reviewed the Peaty Tang which is quite pleasant - in fact I might have one now...

Let me know how much it improves with air.

10 years ago 1Who liked this?

Nemesis101 commented

I was quite stunned at how horrific the 16yo sounded when I read this review! A few months ago I had a bottle of the 14yo and found it quite a decent pleasant whisky. Not amazing but decent enough. (probably 75-80 from memory). Sounds like they've completely knackered it in those extra two years - maybe just a bad bottle or perhaps as you say, it might require breathing for a bit of time?

10 years ago 0

Rigmorole commented

I think "The Toul" is improving as a distillery rather than going downhill. Ralfy seemed quite impressed by the 14 was it, recently?

At any rate, this one I have open is more or less from the old guarde so to speak. I'm curious to try the 14, but I won't be buying a bottle. I would need to taste that in a pub first after this experience. And, yes, this Toul 16 is getting even better.

Here are my new tasting notes: Nose has improved dramatically: cinnamon apple cobbler with nice aromatic cobbler crust; palate: granny smith apples, weak caramel, lingering bitter finish still.

My rating is now 66.6.

10 years ago 0

Rigmorole commented

this one ended up being a crowd pleaser. It improved noticeably after being open for a few weeks. New to whisky drinkers loved it, especially those which mainly drank bourbon. I took it to a cast party out in the woods for a very well known reality show on Animal Planet and the cast and crew liked it a great deal. Go figure.

10 years ago 0

Rigmorole commented

"The Gentle Dram" might not fly here with seasoned whisky drinkers, but it sure as heck did with newbies. The baked apple nose and palate was a favorite. Personally, I was never crazy about it, but, hey, different strokes for different folks. I upped my rating to adjust for the strange fun trip this bottle provided for my friends and guests. It's gone now, and I won't be buying another unless I need a good gift for a newbie whisky drinker. Then I would seriously consider buying a bottle.

10 years ago 0

You must be signed-in to comment here

Sign in