These days it’s difficult to keep up with the onslaught of new independent bottlers arriving on the scene. What is amazing is the range of breadth of their designs, pricing and cask access. For the consumer, it all adds up to a rather momentous if slightly expense period of existence. The Malts of Scotland range is a recent creation from Speciality Drinks Limited who have been bottling for over a decade mainly with the Elements of Islay range. In essence, it’s linked to The Whisky Exchange, which is where you’ll find their current comprehensive range. That Boutique-y Whisky Company is of course linked to Master of Malt thereby demonstrating the power of the Internet today with both labels linked to the major 2 online whisky retail players in the UK, if not the world.
Both could not be different in terms of presentation with a more elegant and refined gent style adopted by Malts of Scotland as opposed to Boutique-y’s cartoon detailed labelling. You may have your own favourite style, but as I rarely have my bottles out on show whilst they’re harbouring contents it doesn’t matter to Whisky Rover. You could wrap the exterior in a brown paper bag as l only care about the contents ultimately. Especially those from The Tormore. However, I do appreciate the effort and as I have some casks lying around Scotland, one-day Whisky Rover will have to consider such details whilst engaging in a spot of cask liberation. For now, let us experience the wonder and majesty of the Tormore times two.
Tormore Batch 1 Boutique-y Whisky Company
Colour: a light honey
Nose: very fresh with juicy pink lady apples with a certain vibrant fizz. Mint leaf and Key lime pie followed by a buttery raw pastry and some shortbread. There’s a floral heather note and a gentle toffee.
Taste: some noticeable cask char before it subdues and a light vanilla cream takes over. This moves into a white chocolate realm before the fruits revive with red apples and pears with then savoury elements with rocket leaves and celeriac. A fleeting touch of smoke right at the back as well.
Overall: very engaging and just enough interest for this Tormore enthusiast. Doing my usual sums to move this from 50cl to 70cl and its just crept over the £100 barrier. It’s a moot point as its sold out now and Batch 2 is heading the same way. A little too much but that could be resolved by the age statement which I’m pleased Boutique-y are now displaying on their releases.
Tormore 1998 Single Malts of Scotland
Colour: apple juice
Nose: very sugary initially with tablet and that creamy element and a talc dryness. Then the characteristic apples arrive in unison with the floral notes and dried raisins. More of the vanilla cream and a touch of dampness to add character.
Taste: vanilla and poached pears with meringues and those old skool sugar cubes. Spices and fruit unite with a rich fruit loaf vibe making for a really nice body, with a gentle finish that starts off tart but moves into a chocolate raisin sweetness.
Overall: very refined indeed, you can pick up the elegance of the whisky and its confidence clearly. I just which I had more of a sample to delve into its depths! The strength isn’t overpowering either, which makes you question why we’re filling casks at 63.5% nowadays.
Well, two more additions to the Tomore files. Again both have features of its distillery character and its playful engaging qualities. The Boutique-y release is a great deal of fun and I’m looking forward to experiencing Batch 2 soon enough. For £150 you’re getting a lot of whisky as the Single Malts of Scotland, whether its the age or strength; you’re in control to adapt things to your experience. If there’s still some left once Cadenheads are done with 2017, I will be making an order or for those who say I’m difficult to purchase Christmas presents for – here’s the hint! Oh and its available at Abbey Whisky as well.