Whisky Review – Tomatin Cù Bòcan Virgin Oak

Tomatin Cù Bòcan Virgin Oak

46% ABV

Non Chill Filtered

No Added Colouring

£49.84 from Master of Malt

This is the third release of Cù Bòcan, Tomatin’s peated single malt expression. This time it has been fully matured in Virgin Oak casks. Limited to only 6000 bottles. Can’t wait, so I’m not going to. Time to taste.

Nose. Lots of crisp lovely lively fruit. Citrus dominates. Lemons, limes, oranges, peel juice and pith. Mostly juice though. Vanilla spice of course, some pepper and cinnamon. Touches of sweet pepper. Hints of spearmint. There is some smoke evident, but merely wisps, more of an oak char. As time goes in the glass we get more toffee and vanilla coming forward. With some confectionary notes, cinder bar. In the background there are more sugary sweet shop curiosities, pineapple cubes, barley sugar & old style boiled sweets. More smoke is coming through now with some frazzled earthy moss.

Palate. Arrival is sweet and immediately sour, acidic like lemon juice, mouth puckering, but in a good way, as this subsides (through the alcohol nip), things goes back to sweet and creamy. Vanilla, fruit sweets, fudge, honey, brown sugar. Custard. The mouthfeel is viscous and coating. A wee touch of the peat comes through at the end of the development.

Finish. Medium length sweet and full of confectionary. Some chocolate intermingled with the vanilla toffee and a hint of smoke and a fair whack of spice.

Adding water. 4-5 drops added in the mix. The nose now has more smoke immediately. Bonfire smoke, still thick with creamy vanilla and fruit. Very much a pudding on the nose. We also have some added floral heather. The palate, now slightly softened from its previous punchlines has more fruit layers, more cream and gentle spiciness. The finish is similarly creamy and relaxed. A tale of two parts here, this is lovely both ways, with and without water. Certainly more of a relaxed and chilled out dram diluted, but really punchy and spicy fresh without water. With more time in the glass notes of desiccated coconut come into the mix.

Conclusion. Brash and punchy on its own, or calming and relaxing with a slash of water. Another beautiful addition to the Cù Bòcan family. It’s dangerous using virgin oak a lot of the time with single malts as it can overpower the spirit, but I think this is not the case with this expression, it’s very well matured. A dram for relaxing away an evening with. Lovely. Much thanks to Tomatin for the review sample.