There’s limited releases. And there’s extremely limited releases. The Boutique-y Gin Company does both. And Tobermory Heavily Peated Oloroso Cask is one of the latter. Batch 11, which we’re reviewing here was only a release of 98 bottles.
To understand the concept Tobermory Heavily Peated Oloroso Cask, single cask bathtub gin, you must follow the journey of the barrel. Straight from the coopers, the barrel went to a Sherry makers’ in Spain. It held an Oloroso, which is a dark, nutty and complex sherry that oxidizes for a looong time before being drank.
After its time holding sherry, the barrel made it way to the UK. Many Whisky distilleries, in particular in Ireland and Scotland prize sherry barrels for their whisky. So then, some “heavily peated” single malt whisky lived in this barrel at the Tobermory distillery on the island of Mull.
And after that, it journeyed one more time, this time to hold a bathtub gin.
Might the barrel have yet one more life? Three different drinks and different spirits? Oh the life of a barrel!
The Tobermory Heavily Peated Oloroso Cask Bathtub Gin has a sunny hue to it. The nose has some recognizable peat and hints of cherry cola. Cola being an interesting botanical description. If you’re familiar with a widely publicized list of ingredients in Coca-Cola you’ll see a lot of common gin botanicals: vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, coriander and lemon. Given that this gin was both aged (vanillin) and bathtub style (you have literal macerations of the aforementioned ingredients), it’s not surprising that an aged gin can invoke comparisons to cola.
The palate suggests a very strong relationship with the barrel’s forebears. Lots of gentle notes of Scotch. They’re dominant but not overpowering. The palate blooms into a more gin balanced approach in the middle of the tongue. I get notes of pecan, coriander, pine-forward juniper, oak, and black tea. Baking spice notes come shortly after.
The finish of this Tobermory influenced gin has a pleasant long note of wood, which dully glows from the back of the palate. A trace of resinous juniper and pine, and a quite pleasant warmth.
Tobermory Heavily Peated Oloroso Cask Bathtub Gin is a good sipper. I suggest trying it neat, and can’t say that I found any other cocktail application which would quite do it justice. In terms of mixing, the Scotch character, while subtle, tends to be the dominant perspective. If you do choose to mix it, might I suggest a Gin and Soda (a la a Scotch and Soda) rather than a Gin and Tonic.
Scotch and whisk(e)y drinkers who dabble in gin will certainly find something to like here. Gin drinkers who dabble in brown spirits, will also find a lot to like here. The name is a mouthfeel, but Tobermory Heavily Peated Oloroso Cask, Single Cask Bathtub Gin is a worthy addition to any drinker’s winter sipping spirit arsenal.
If you’ve been holding out from aged gins because of some of the harsh oak notes, this might be the one to change your mind.
Recommended in its category.
What other cocktails can I make with aged gin?
The first cocktail book dedicated to barrel aged gins is now out! Featuring 25 Cocktails!
Including historical re-interpretations like the Fallen Angel cocktail from 1941 (which originally featured barrel-aged Booth's Gin).
...and completely new creations like the Cola Approval, the best way to make a gin-and-tonic like drink with aged gin.