Tomatin 2007 (Gordon & MacPhail Discovery)

“So Many Casks So Little Time”

Whisky Review # 997

Country: Scotland 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿
Region: Highlands
Brand: Tomatin 2007
Matured & Bottled By/For: Gordon & MacPhail - Discovery Series - Bottled: 2018
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Age: Almost 11 Years
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 43%
Maturation: First-Fill Ex-Bourbon casks
Chill Filtration: Yes
Price Range: US$ 50-60 (July 2023)
Price/Quality Ratio: 😐 Okay
Buying Advice: 😑 It's okay but not more than that

Colour: Light Golden (Natural Colour)


It's like walking into a Bakery. Dough, Grain, Yeast, Sugar and Butter are all there. It's a Young Spirit by all means and the Alcohol is slightly noticeable. The Nose is not bad and the casks are of good quality. There's some Fruit in the background but all in all it's a bit forgettable.

Main Aromas:

Sweet Barley, German Butter Biscuits, Vanilla, Bounty Candy Bars, Dough, Yeast, Apfel Strudel, Banana Ice Cream, Floral Perfume, Cigar Box and Grass.
Supportive Aroma Accents:

Honey, Toffee, Caramel, Demerara Sugar, Lemon, Nectarine, Poire Belle Helene, Cashew Nuts and Peanuts, Cinnamon and Mint.


Young, Light but Creamy and mostly Sweet. Nothing that really calls my attention I'm afraid.

Main Flavours:

Sweet Barley, Vanilla, Apfel Strudel, Banana Ice Cream, Bounty Candy Bars, Pine Nuts, Grass, Cigar Box, Cinnamon and Pepper.

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Honey, Demerara Sugar, Buttered Toast with some Marmalade, Nectarine, Lemon, Pineapple, Floral tones, Herbs, Ginger and Mint.


On the Short side and rather Thin despite a Creamy mouthfeel. Mainly Sweet but with some light Bitterness towards the Medium-Dry end. Easily the weakest part of this Tomatin. I find Sweet Barley, Caramel, Vanilla, Buttered Toast, Honey, Nuts Candy Bars, Warm Apple Sauce, Peanut Butter, Pineapple on Heavy Syrup, Floral tones, Fresh Herbs, Lemon, Cigar Box, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Menthol and Pepper. A little Hot in the aftertaste.

Drinking Advice:

Added Water does not improve this Tomatin.

Rating: 7 (*******)

Nose: 7.5 - Taste: 7 - Finish: 6.5

*** Important Note with respect to Rating.

If the Final score is above 8 you can safely buy the whisky in question if and when it fits your Aroma/Flavor profile. If the score is between 6 and 8 you might want to try it out in the form of a sample or if offered at a good price. Anything below 6 should be left alone when you are looking for a nice sipping whisky. You might still like it of course & I realize pricing is an important item for many whisky fans especially when you are used to enjoy whisky in a cocktail or a mixed drink.

Drinking Experience Neat: Okay


Tomatin was founded in 1897 by the Tomatin Spey Distillery Company. In 1985 the distillery went into liquidation and was bought in 1987 by Takara Shuzo Co. and Okara & Co, both from Japan which was quite remarkable at that time. In fact, Tomatin was the first Scottish distillery that became fully owned by Japanese companies. Currently the shares are being hold by Takara Shuzo (81%)  Marubeni (14%) and Kokubu (5%). Tomatin has always been a distillery that produced large quantities of Spirit for Blends but in the last 15 years they started to concentrate on producing and marketing Single Malts as well. As a result, the production decreased from well over 10 million litres in the 1970's/1980's to around 1,8 million litres in 2022. They still produce Blends as well though. (Antiquary, Big T and the Talisman). Today's Single Malt core range includes the NAS Legacy, the 12, 18, 30 and 36 years. In 2016, new packaging and bottles were introduced for the entire core range.

I'm a big fan of Gordon & MacPhail and I was looking forward to taste this Tomatin but I have to say that I'm rather disappointed with this Highland Whisky. The idea of the Discovery Series is to let people get acquainted with the most used Cask-types at an affordable price. As such this Tomatin works. The casks are of good quality and the Vanilla shines highlighting the Ex-Bourbon casks. But as a whole it's a rather Thin and uneventful Single Malt that would have benefited from more time in the casks. I know that it would have become more expensive but still....


Jan van den Ende                                                                         July 24, 2023

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