I'm looking for some feedback from anyone who has tried Tamdhu. Our state liquor stores have a few bottles (IB, 12yr old) on sale and I'm considering buying one. Right now I have two considerations. First, State run liqour stores have a virtual monopoly on whisky, so sales are rare (who would they be competing against, right?). Second, MJ's whisky companion (3rd ed) makes it sound like a typical laid-back speysider, like Tomintoul or Tamnavulin. If so, I want to avoid it since $65 would buy me a nice bottle of Talisker. Any feedback would be appretiated.
From what I gather of your tastes, Frodo, you'd do better to buy something else.
I'd prefer Tamdhu to Tamnavulin (which I won't buy again, I don't think), but I certainly look to other whiskies in the same price bracket before returning to Tamdhu (but I HAVE returned...).
It is not particularly peaty, but it is malty almost in the way that an Irish can be. Like I said in the first post, it has a strange refreshing quality that makes it kind of interesting. But I'd buy a Bowmore, Bunnahabhain, Cragganmore, McClelland's, Pulteney, Aberlour, etc ahead of it, for the same price. Here, Tamdhu is cheaper than all those, save Aberlour, so it's not a bad buy. But you're talking a top dollar price for whisky that you may not find all that stimulating.
I can't make the decision for you, obviously. Tamdhu is a nice dram, but I wouldn't pay $60 for it.
Quite drinkable and inoffensive, but nothing that will blow your socks off.
This IB bottling you are considering would have to be pretty spectacular or cask strength to justify the significantly higher price tag.
Alberta privatized liquor sales and instead of taxing a few bottles a million % they tax a million bottles a few percent. The Govt knows that if they make beer expensive, we'll riot.
Thanks for the lookout folks.
Can you compare/contrast Tamdhu with Tomintoul? I quite like Tomintoul as an easy-going change of pace. Sometimes you don't want to get hit over the head with the flavour profile, and something less... aggressive is what you want. We get Tomintoul here for $48 cdn and I was curious about a comparison.
I tasted a Tamdhu once from the Peerless range of Duntcan Taylor, and that was quite nice and fruity, but not a heavy weight.
Another Tamdhu was one from G&M, a sherry matured, that one was bigger in flavor and very rich of aroma, a bit more complex.
I think sometimes that Tamdhu is very underestimated, if you just took the time to find out what this malt could offer you....
It's absolutely worth the money for some older Tamdhu expressions, especially if you like lighter style whiskies. And I'm willing to pay the price for some expressions, a good thing here in the Netherlands is, that we have a festival called the Pot Still Festival and there I can taste some rare DT stuff or some rare G&M stuff. A good time to compare the quality and the price for different expressions from various distillers....
Ofcourse you can buy lots of other nice stuff too for that money, such as an older Glenrothes, The Glenlivet, The Macallan etc.
I mean you can't realy compare the whiskies of higher prices, but I agree that some whisky's ain't worth the price compared with quality, if that's what you mean. But then again each quality has its price and not to mention for some whisky's the exclusivety.
It's a very strange world sometimes and you might wonder why you pay about 1100 GBP for a Glenury Royal, it's good quality of whisky I can asure you that, but it's very very rare. But the question is, is it worth that kind of money? Well it cuts both ways, one would say it's too expensive for me and I can't blame him, it is very expensive, another would say it's worth the price for such a rare malt whisky. Where will it end?
I would go by my own feelings and if Tamdhu is realy one of your drams, why not give it a go to buy some older expressions? But keep in mind the bottler. Distillery Bottles are usually OK, then you have a various range of othe independent bottlers who put a rare and old expression of Tamdhu on the market from time to time and those price and quality may vary from bottler to bottler.
I just hope that I shined some light on this matter for you Frodo.
I love Ardbeg, and although I am not a rich man I have been seriously considering a bottle of the 1974 provenance for some time. At around £250, I know I would love drinking it and it would give me great pleasure to be able to say that I really know, that whisky.
Similarly, with Buffalo Trace, I had tried and really enjoyed nearly every whisky they produced before getting my hands on the Big Boss. I invested a lot of time and money in getting some George T. Stagg. To me it was worth every minute and every penny, but others here would probably think very little of it.
Basically, I think you should know you click with the distillery before spending a lot of money.
It's very personal, weather you should stay with a Distillery Bottles or not. Some people like the Independent Bottlers more that the Distillery Bottles. For you it's the distillery bottle that counts the most, but for me it's a mixture, I sometimes like an expression from an Independent Bottler more then the Distillery Bottle. But the other part from Independent expressions is, that they have limited stock and bottle them by the cask only and as we know not all the casks are the same.
It's a balance you try to find for your self. I consider my self very lucky, because a distributor here in holland organizes a yearly festival, The Pot Still Festival. At that particular venue some independent bottlers are represented there. Bottlers like Murray Mcdavid(including Bruichladdich), Signatory, Duncan Taylor, Gordon & MacPhail and The Ultimate Series. So there's a choice for everyone and a good chance to try them there. And some of them will let you try a nice old Tamdhu or a Strathisla etc.....
You are indeed fortunate - your pot still event sounds great fun.
The majority of my Scotch tasting experience has been from buying whole bottles. I would have to say that I've been let down by independent bottles much more often than DB's and have grown wary of them.
I'm sure I'll start on the independent bottlers again some day, but at the moment my main obsession is with American whisky, so it will have to wait !
There are a few differences I can think of. One, is that the 40Y old was very very limited. Two, is that they might have picked the best cask(s) for the 40Y old, so they are sure to have the best quality. Three, is that the package is a bit over-exclusive.
But I agree that 1377 GBP is a huge difference for 2 years extra. Then all I can say is, is it the quality of the cask that might be reconsidered. I mean after all the Scotch Malt Whisky Society uses single casks for their bottlings. Then raises a couple of questions: What would an original bottle of 38Y do from Glenfarclas? Or is it just the good and reputable name of Glenfarclas that makes it much more expensiver, by doing it under own label?
All I know that if distilleries decided to do some own expressions, they allways comes first when it comes to select their casks for the expression....
At the LCBO, Abelour 10yr (OB) is $40 and Laphroig 10 (OB) is $50. Remember this 12yr bottling of Tamdhu is $64.
Thanks for the feedback. What I want to avoid is paying a premium for whiskies on the basis of scarcity. What I want is something that tastes good for the lowest possible price. And if Tamdhu doesn't taste that much different from Tomintoul, Tamnavulin, or a few other laid-back speyside drams of simillar style, why would I want to pay the significant markup for it? If however there are subtle but meaningful differences between it and the others, I'd like to know, because that will influance my choice to buy or not to buy.
I do really appretiate all the feedback on this thread. Thanks folks!!
I would suggest that fits the description of limited.
Further the Society is also known for choosing excellent casks; they have a reputation for cherry picking the best that the industry has to offer.
In this case, I, for one, am quite happy not to pay for fancy packaging. Although it was interesting to watch Robert use a screw driver to gain access to the bottle.
I completely disagree that only the best cask are used for the official bottlings, please refer to Loch Dhu and compare it to the Society's offerings from Mannochmore for a coarse example.
You are right on the last you wrote, some Distillery Bottles are less then an independent. However I think that the majority of distillers will select good casks for their standard brands.
SMWS has indeed a good reputation, however as time passes you allways meet people who disagree on that one. Some I spoke where not very happy. As for my self I have tryed a few times some of their whisky's, because some friends have a membership and I don't have one. In general, those SMWS whisky's where not bad at all. I'm not going to say that they are an ace or something linke that, that's because I don't know them that well
As for the 40Y old Glenfarclas, yes it's nice to watch soomeone to open a package from a bottle worth 1500 GBP with a screwdriver or even a knive...
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