I recently hosted a tasting event at which Raasay Distillery Brand Ambassador Chris Hoban took the group through not only some Raasay cask samples and new make but some expressions from R&B Distillers Tweeddale Heritage range.
One of the favourite drams of the night was the Tweedale Evolution 28 year old Blend. It was a new one on me and for many of the group. It was also the first dram we tried that night and was a great way to start.
The Evolution is non-chill filtered and contains no colouring. No official (or unofficial) list of component malts but it is described as being a blend of classic Speyside single malts and a Lowland single grain. Rumour is that there are some whiskies in here that are older than 28, some are into their 30’s.
The Tweeddale brand has been around since the 1820s and was reborn when the blends were recreated by current owner Alasdair Day using his grandfathers cellar book, which he used when he worked for the company that blended the Tweeddale from 1895 until the 1940’s.
Tweeddale – The Evolution, Blended Scotch Whisky, 28 yo, IB, 52%abv
The nose is full of fresh baked pastries, apricot jam and wafts of citrus laden vanilla notes. Given time there are custard cream biscuits and some fresh apples. There is an undercurrent of faint cedar wood.
The palate is very fruity and feels nicely waxy. The apricots from the nose are still prominent, alongside some very gentle spices. Only here do we start to notice the 52% abv. It starts to feel a little darker with some red fruits and perhaps the emerging of some chocolate and a few raisins. Vaguely reminiscent of rum and raisin ice cream perhaps.
The finish is really just more of the same, not many new nuances to be discovered here. The palate fades pleasantly and retains the fruitiness we first encountered on the nose. Touches of soft spice come and go with a little twist of drying oak at the very end.
I had very much enjoyed this at the tasting and had pretty much assumed that I was just getting carried away as it was a fun night. Taking my time and trying it for a second time only confirmed my initial opinion of it was correct. A very pleasant dram indeed and well with looking out for. I have seen this priced at £175 or so, which is perhaps a touch high, but there are websites out there with it on deal for about £130 which, at that price, it is excellent value.
You can find more of my tasting notes in the Amateur Drammers Archives.
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