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Whisky reviews and tasting notes featuring Scotch whisky, Irish whiskey, American whiskey and the best World Whiskies

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Compass Box No Name whisky review

What's In a Name? Everything! Compass Box No Name

Compass Box No Name is a remarkable blended malt, released in September 2017 with only 15,000 bottles. This NAS, non-chill-filtered whisky combines 75.5% Ardbeg, 10.6% Caol Ila, 13.4% Clynelish, and a small percentage of a special blended malt. It boasts a medium amber color and a complex nose featuring ashen peat smoke, lemon scones, toasted oak, and honey. The palate is hot and oily, with dominant peat, spice, lemon curd, and sea salt, perfectly balanced with caramel and vanilla. The long, spicy finish is incredibly satisfying. Avoid adding water to preserve its intricate flavors.


Kilkerran 15 Year Old Single Cask, Bourbon Wood whisky review

Happy Anniversary Kilkerran 15 Year Old Single Cask, Bourbon Wood

To mark Glengyle Distillery's 15th anniversary, they released Kilkerran 15 Year Old Single Cask whiskies, each matured in different cask types. This review focuses on the Bourbon Wood variant, specifically the 53.5% ABV version available in Canada. Distilled in May 2004, it spent 10 years in a bourbon puncheon and 5 years in a refill bourbon hogshead, yielding 306 bottles. The nose offers sweet fruits, wax, and a mineral backbone, while the palate delivers a blend of sweetness, umami, and coastal notes. The finish features citrus rind, smoke, and spices. This whisky showcases unique characteristics not often found today.


Talisker 57º North whisky review

Graceful Bruiser Talisker 57º North

I was initially hesitant to try Talisker 57º North, but thanks to recommendations, I took the plunge and was not disappointed. This whisky, surprisingly soft on the alcohol despite its strength, offers a nose of dense, toffee’d malt, black pepper, iodine, and spices like ginger and Chinese five spice. Neat, it’s fresh and clean, but a bit of water enhances the peat and pepper. The taste is tar-like with toffee, figgy sweetness, honey, and more pronounced peat. The long, peaty finish has a refreshing dryness, balanced by sweet and sour notes. A graceful, versatile whisky, perfect for any occasion.


Bruichladdich Octomore 5 Year Old 06.3 whisky review

Picking in God's candy jar, Octomore 6.3 vs 7.3 Bruichladdich Octomore 5 Year Old 06.3

I compared two exceptional Scotch whiskies, Octomore 6.3 and 7.3, both made from barley grown near Loch Indaal. The 6.3, aged in Bourbon barrels with a peat level of 258 ppm, and the 7.3, finished in Spanish wine casks with 169 ppm peat, offer distinct experiences. The 6.3's rich, thick mouthfeel and balanced flavors of sweet, sour, and smoky elements impressed me, earning a score of 94/100. The 7.3, with its vanilla, mint, and wine cask influence, scored 90/100. Both are outstanding, but the 6.3 stands out for its complexity and depth.


Arran 14 Year Old whisky review

Hangin' Tough Arran 14 Year Old

Arran distillery, once a newcomer, has cemented its reputation among established whisky makers. Known for its fruity and slightly maritime character, the Arran 14 Year Old was a fan favorite for its excellent value. Unfortunately, this beloved expression has been discontinued following a line-up revamp. The whisky offers a sharp, attention-grabbing nose with sweet sherry, pineapple, and spicy French oak. Its full-bodied palate features oak, cappuccino, croissants, and a pleasant bitterness, while the finish is marked by astringent oak, sea salt, ginger, and peach. Fresh, spicy, and fruity, this unique dram set a high standard for both new and seasoned distillers.


Ben Nevis 10 Year Old whisky review

Big Ben Ben Nevis 10 Year Old

I've always had a soft spot for Ben Nevis, thanks to family holidays in Fort William and fond memories of its stunning vistas. The whisky itself is robust and full of character, needing just a drop of water to smooth out the rough edges. The nose offers well-integrated sherry, mild salt, peat, and a unique yeasty note. The taste is rich with toffee, sherry, lemony malt, and a touch of old oak. The long finish is spicy with ginger and pepper, reminiscent of Talisker's peppery notes. This "old-school" sherried whisky is bold, moreish, and deeply satisfying.


Talisker 10 Year Old whisky review

Salt & Pepper Talisker 10 Year Old

Celebrating my recovery from a recent health issue, I indulged in a pour of Talisker 10 Year Old, half a bottle still remaining after months. The nose offers a comforting mix of sweet, salty, and tangy aromas, with toffee, white pepper, and a hint of fruit. The taste transitions from sweet and fruity to sour, featuring tangy peat and dominating black pepper, though slightly thin. The finish is medium to long, with persistent black pepper and a touch of toffee. While air exposure has softened its sharpness, Talisker 10 remains an enjoyable classic, especially as an alternative to Islay malts.


Springbank 10 Year Old whisky review

Eh... an unusually gifted child? Springbank 10 Year Old

In this review of Springbank 10 Year Old, I delve into its unique characteristics and complexities. The color is reminiscent of freshly cut hay with a greenish tint, and the nose reveals hints of freshly cut grass, honeycomb, and oven-baked apple peel. On the palate, there's a delicate sweetness that's hard to pinpoint, with a viscous, inviting texture. The finish is subtle yet lingering, with metallic and waxy notes. Adding a drop of water brings out a citrusy freshness but also accentuates the waxy finish. Overall, this whisky offers a dynamic and enjoyable experience, well worth its price.


Talisker 41 Year Old 1978 Bodega Series whisky review

Palate Progression Talisker 41 Year Old 1978 Bodega Series

I had the privilege of attending the Belgian release of the Talisker 41 Year Old 1978 Bodega Series, a remarkable addition to the sherry-finished malts from 1978. This second release in the series is aged in Manzanilla casks from Delgado Zuleta bodega, making it the oldest and most expensive Talisker yet at 3,500 EUR. The nose offers soft, sweet notes of tropical fruits and subtle maritime hints. The palate is complex, evolving from tropical fruit to caramel, with pepper, salt, and a hint of bonfire. The long, supple finish features smoked salmon and leather. This elegant whisky is truly divine.


Lagavulin 12 Year Old / 17th Release / Special Releases 2017 whisky review

Thou art beautiful! Lagavulin 12 Year Old / 17th Release / Special Releases 2017

Discover the 2017 Lagavulin 12 Year Old, a standout in Diageo's annual special releases. This cask strength whisky features a malty, phenolic nose with hints of brine, cardboard, and lemon. The palate is medium-bodied and smooth, showcasing sooty, salty, and spicy notes, perfectly balanced with a touch of lemon. Its long, ashy finish retains the lemon essence till the end. This Lagavulin 12-year-old maintains the brand's legacy of excellence, proving once again to be a brilliant choice for whisky aficionados.


Talisker 57º North whisky review

Spirit of the North Talisker 57º North

I picked up a 1L bottle of Talisker 57º North at Ben Gurion airport in 2015, eager to try this extravagant whisky. I opened it during a tasting with friends, where it was highly appreciated, particularly by one friend who enjoyed several glasses. The whisky, almost two-thirds full and gassed after each use, has a fresh, fruity, and slightly peaty nose, with enhanced fruitiness and reduced complexity with water. Its taste is spicy, peppery, and sweet, with a long, astringent finish that mellows with water.


Longrow 18 Year old whisky review

Refined and elegant Longrow 18 Year old

In this review of the Longrow 18 Year Old (2014 release), I explore its complex and refined character. On the nose, it's waxy with hints of salt, smoke, and brine, followed by olive oil, vanilla, and a touch of orange. The palate is medium-bodied, oily, and slightly spicy, featuring vanilla, apples, lemons, and subtle smoke. The finish is medium-length, warming, and brings back the waxy notes along with peat and white pepper, ending on an ashy note. This multi-layered, old-school whisky is a highlight of the year, showcasing elegance and depth.


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