Whisky Connosr

Talisker 10 Year Old

Scuse me.. while i kiss the Skye!

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LReview by @Lifewaterforce

26th Jul 2013


Talisker 10 Year Old
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Sorry for the title couldn't hold myself. It is hard to review this whisky but i think, as a fan of the Talisker taste, it would be a test to see how honest i could be with my own personal opinion on how well this whisky holds up, independently from my feelings towards it, but also from my tastebuds. As feelings, in whisky, are a matter of taste.

This then is an early 2012 bottling so it's fairly recent, just for the record i score personally the 2006-11 Talisker 10 a solid 93 out of a 100, how much i love it!

Nose: Damp & Pungent Smoke emerges from the glas with peppery vivid (although not quite as vivid as before) from the glass. It stays on course for awhile then sea salt, seaweed & seashores.

Taste: Big Smoke arrives on a warm chariot supported by iodine white & black peppers. The peppers go into a chilli metamorphosis and the feast warms up further. Along comes the peat, even more pungent than on the nose brings with it the iodine and marine qualities.

The pungent marine peatiness holds on with an encore of the sea air/breezes and seaweed this time on a bed of barley sugar and toffee.

Finish: The barley sugar carries the damp/moist peat to the finishing line in a fairly long finish, although not as long as i remember it, less eventful and less... distinct.

The Talisker 10 is still a stable Classic Malt advocate but it has unfortunately lost it's sting over the years. Probably due to the fact that although Diageo know what they are doing when it comes to blends, i think they are still stuck in a with the excellent single malts that they have ( and they have plenty).

Problem is that some brands under Diageo seem to suffer from very sterile and particularely strong chill-filtration, as well as caramel.

As so many have said, including our famous vloger Ralfy, it is fine to chill-filter and caramelize blends or mixing spirits, it's not the same type of spirit and aimed at a different audience entirely. But that also holds for single malts and the whisky enthusiasts who appreciates it like us here on this site. So it's not in anyone's interest to put shackles on an otherwise so competent malt (which the unhinged 57 north testifies well to).

If you want to attract posh people that buy the whisky to show off more than collect/save it or just appreciate it and taste it, then you will always have premium blends for that. Single malts are for people who appreciate it, not necessarily knows everything about them (beware whisky-snobs), but you have to respect it and hone it. That's the purpose of single malts, their different animals for different customers.


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Nemesis101 commented

I am 100% with you on the caramel and non chill-filtration thing - I absolutely hate it and Diageo still seem to be one of the worst offenders (at least with their staple entry-level range). Fully agree about the audiences they're aimed at - a single malt enthusiast isn't going to 'down-in-one' any whisky. They're after individuality and character - not 'sanitized and polished' whisky. For me Talisker 10 is one of those where I used to I love it, but now I occasionally find myself disappointed and completely indifferent to it. What you say about the changes between 2011 and 2012 might just explain what.

10 years ago 0

Lifewaterforce commented

Well put! It seems though more and more people are agreeing with this opinion, bodes quite well for the future as the whisky industry are seemingly listening more and more to the customers, which is encouraging considering the circumstances that we're living in otherwise.

10 years ago 0

Victor commented

Purple Haze? Hendrix? Pulls me right in...

My bottle of Talisker 10 was nothing but salt, pepper, and a drop of honey until the bottle was open 7 months, and then, BLAM!, the honey just opened up a torrent like a firehose and the flavours exploded with richness. It tastes great now...but I must say I have seen more variation in flavour in the maybe 7 bottles of Talisker 10 from which I have sampled than probably from any other whisky I have ever tried.

Thanks for another earnest and passionate review!

10 years ago 0

Lifewaterforce commented

It's true that the talisker seems to shapeshift it's quality, although i've only owned 4 bottles of 10 yr old but 3 of 57 and 1 of 25. I've seen how much cask variation affects this beast, 2011&12 was great although 13 thus far is proving dissapointing.

10 years ago 0