Tamdhu is one of the distilleries to have benefited from the current demand for Scotch whisky – in fact, it actually saved it. Built at the end of the nineteenth century, Tamdhu was envisaged as being the most advanced distillery ever devised.
Unfortunately, the distillery’s whisky never gained the unenviable reputation its founders sought, with periods of dormancy throughout the twentieth century. Capacity was tripled during an expansion in the 1970s, but its wares were blended away and the stills finally fell silent in April 2010.
But Tamdhu was given a new lease of life when Ian MacLeod Distillers came to the rescue. The independent bottler bought the distillery from Edrington – to sit alongside its other purchase, Glengoyne – and the stills started running again in May 2013.
Since then, the distillery has built up a solid reputation. The first expression in the Tamdhu Batch Strength range took home a Double Gold Medal at the 2016 San Francisco World Spirits Competition and was also named Speyside Single Malt of the Year at the 22nd Annual Whisky Advocate Awards in December 2015. So, unsurprisingly, here comes Tamdhu Batch Strength 002
As the name might suggest, this is the second batch strength release from Tamdhu. Matured in sherry oak casks, the Tamdhu Batch Strength 002 is bottled at 58.5%, is un-chillfiltered and has been bottled with its natural colour.
Each batch is unique and varies slightly in style and strength but it’s promised that they all capture the complex richness and intensity of sherry cask matured whisky. So, does it live up to its promise?
The sherried oak comes right through on the nose, with some warming golden syrup, demerara sugar and cinnamon. There’s also a slightly warming hint of smoke. The palate is beautifully fruity, with sweat honey and cream vanilla. Adding a wee bit of water crystallises the honey but I preferred the longer, spicier finish the cask strength finish offered before the water was added.
A solid, yet not overwhelming, example of sherried Speyside – roll on Tamdhu Batch Strength 003!!!
You can find out more about Tamdhu over on the distillery’s website.