We dropped in the Tomatin distillery which is just off the A9, around 16 miles South of Inverness and 16 miles North of Aviemore. So an ideal location and well hidden, just a short stone throw from the main motorway.
Despite being a massive distillery, with an almost military styled assortment of huge warehouses on the approach road. Tomatin is not one readily available or recognisable to most Scottish consumers. I guess that's mostly due to its produce going towards the export market, or into blends. However things do seem to be changing.
Sadly when we arrived the facility was not in production so we decided against the £3 tour and watched a short DVD in the seating area and had a taste of the 12 year old malt. Surprisingly the dram and video viewing were free; marvellous tonic and an interesting short video. So I will head back sometime to fully experience the tour itself, to comment on it here would be wrong. A warm welcome at the Visitor Centre and a huge range of their malts, the special blends and those lovely limited editions (a 40 year old for £500) are all available to purchase.
It is the sheer size that is impressive. Whereas the Oban Distillery, a whole town has grown around the distillery site, in Tomatin you're very much out in the wilds. Within the complex are many workers cottages for the employees who still work at the distillery; many going back generations. The actual 12 year malt itself was a real surprise and begs the question why it isn't more readily available.
I'll post some thoughts on the 3 main malts when I have the opportunity to sit down with these later this month. I'm looking forward to it based on the brief sample. As always the distillery photos are available for viewing right here.
Labels: tomatin distillery, whisky