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Talisker 10 Year Old

Hey Diageo, where's the peat?

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@SMCReview by @SMC

2nd Apr 2013


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I do a lot of research before buying a bottle, especially one that costs $80 like Talisker 10. I expected the peat/salt notes that are typical of the Island style and mentioned in so many reviews here and elsewhere. Instead I got an extremely plain ho-hum whiskey. Even the bottle of Bushmills Black I had going at the same time was superior.

Nose/palate where almost identical: soft malt followed by custard and some red fruits. Seems like it might have spent some time in a sherry cask. Too bad it ends there.

Laddie 10 is a better whisky for the style at $16 less. I don't think I'll be buying any Diageo malts again. I've been disappointed by them all except Lagavulin, but it's too expensive for me to purchase again. It's too bad, I really wanted to like Talisker.

Related Talisker reviews


Rigmorole commented

$80 is more than I paid for the 18 year. Too much for the ten. I like Talisker with lush smoke and not so much peat. I think it's a nice variation from Islas like Ardbeg and Lagavulin with heavy peat. If it's peat you're after, why not pay less for the young Ardbeg? It's very nice and very peaty.

As for Bushmills Black being superior, well, I can't agree with that, but it's a matter of personal taste to be sure. I have noticed that Talisker has been selling batches that are not as uniform as in the past. Sounds like maybe you got a weak batch.

7 years ago 0

SMC commented

I definitely think I got an off bottle considering how my experience contrasts with so many others. Part of the reason I wrote this though is that distillers need to be accountable for inconsistent releases.

As for the price, I don't have any choice unless I take a trip to the US. Ardbeg 10 is $100 here, however Laphroaig QC, Laddie 10, Ardmore and a younger IB of Lagavulin are decently priced.

7 years ago 0

Victor commented

@SMC, Talisker 10 can evolve a lot as it starts to oxidise. See what it tastes like in a few months. You might well like it a lot more. My bottle improved radically with oxidation. In addition, I've seen a lot of variation in the samples of Talisker 10 I have had from bars and restaurants. I think this whisky does tend to be pretty batch variable.

I think that only reputation in the market will police the distillers with regard to quality control of their individual batches of whisky.

7 years ago 0

SMC commented

@Victor, some good advice I'm sure, but I wrote this review while finishing the bottle. It lived about a month and a half, and I didn't taste any real change during that period.

Maybe I'll give it another shot in a couple years.

7 years ago 0

Rigmorole commented

Try the 18 instead

7 years ago 0

FMichael commented

I've only enjoyed the Talisker 10 yr now for about 2 years (having gone thru 3 bottles, and I'm half-way thru my 4th bottle in these 2 years)...

The "older" bottles had the all blue box (bottled in 2009), and my more recent bottles (bottled in 2012) have the scenic coast/shoreline with waves crashing in...

For what it's worth - all 4 bottles have had the exact same nose/palate from what I can tell...All have been exceptionally tasty.

7 years ago 0

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