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Talisker 18 Year Old

Watching the Sun Set Over Skye

9 1391

@RianCReview by @RianC

18th Mar 2018

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  • Nose
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  • Taste
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  • Finish
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  • Balance
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  • Overall
    91

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

I'd been quietly eyeing this one up for a while. My experiences with the 10 have been OK, decent etc but it never grabbed the way it seems to do with others - always happy to try again though . . . With that in mind, a birthday request was fulfilled and here we are.

This seems to get pretty solidly high marks across the board but the web shows that batch variation may be a slight issue. I can only assess and enjoy what's in front of me so here goes. Bottle half full and been open about one month. This is from a neat pour.

Nose: Elegant and powerful. Seaweed, rocky beach at low tide, chewy caramel toffee, lots of oak wood and spice: baker's ginger, a little clove, some pepper, hints of nutmeg and cinnamon. Peat and smoke lie under the nose rather than on top of it, if that makes any sense? Water opens it up and brings out some sweet fruity influence and more toffee but reduces the palette too much for my liking.

Taste: Sweet as it arrives with the toffee muscling it's way forward then smoke and lots of mixed baking spice. Something like chocolate and coffee develops but it's quite hard to pin down - it's not that it changes, more that it is very well integrated and complex. Excellent full mouth feel; really coats one's palette.

Finish: Long, rather peppery and a lovely liquorice sweet peat that hangs around for a while; eventually going a little sour and drying. No 'bitter wood' here. Warming and comforting.

@Victor has described this as a sunset whisky and I think I know what he means! It's got pretty much all I'd want in a whisky (maybe just a touch more 'funk'?!); every sip is a joy, to be honest. One of the best I've had with possibly the finest finish - it's a real shame this is at the upper end of what I could justify spending on a whisky. This may become an annual Christmas or Birthday 'purchase' though.

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13 comments

@Victor
Victor commented

Nicely done review, @RianC! And what an excellent photo to match your title. Talisker 18 yo has a lot of fans, with good reason.

6 months ago 1Who liked this?

@casualtorture
casualtorture commented

Great review! Makes me want to try this one. I love the 57N and currently have a few 10yo on the shelf. This seems like a good next step. If only I could find it for a reasonable price...

6 months ago 1Who liked this?

@Hewie
Hewie commented

Another great review! This is on my list for a special occasion

6 months ago 1Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC commented

@Hewie @casualtorture - Thank you! I don't think you would be in any way disappointed if you did take the plunge as you both seem to like other Taliskers. I have a 57 North in the stash . . . very tempted to pop it and have side by side but also want to delay the gratification, slightly!

@Victor - Thanks also! You were right and thank you to you (and others) that convinced me to give it a go. My only down side to this is that the bottle is going down too quickly. I save it for weekends and only have one pour a day - but those pours are quite big! blush

6 months ago 4Who liked this?

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

@RianC Your last comment is as eloquent as your review. Quality is eminently quaffable. Cheers!

6 months ago 1Who liked this?

Wierdo commented

Great review. I've had a bottle of this about 5 years ago and loved it. It's a big step up from the 10 and a significantly different whisky as I recall.

I've got an unopened bottle which I'm looking forward to cracking open when I've created some space in my cupboard!

6 months ago 1Who liked this?

@MadSingleMalt
MadSingleMalt commented

@RianC, how's your "57 North delayed gratification effort" holding up?

5 months ago 1Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC commented

@MadSingleMalt - It's still lurking in the stash - with intent!

When I finish my T18 I'll probably open the Bruichladdich 10 2nd Ed as the warmer weather should be on its way by then . . . I fancy the 57 for next winter when its warming charms should be perfectly suited. We shall see ...

5 months ago 1Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor commented

@RianC, I'd peg Talisker 57 Degrees North as more of a 24/7/365 whisky. None of this "wait for the cold weather" stuff. By contrast I usually drink Talisker 18 only when I am in very particular moods and especially ready to appreciate its peculiar charms. There are MANY North Americans who wish that they could just go out and buy 57 North off of a shelf at a good price as you can. The Americans can only get it from abroad, and the Canadians, if they can get it, usually have to pay a king's ransom for it.

5 months ago 2Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC commented

@Victor - You're not making it easy now are you? wink

5 months ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@RianC I hope not. Actually I think that if I had to choose one single whisky to drink on any and all days Talisker 57 Degrees North could easily be that whisky. Why, especially? Because I do not ever get tired of 57 North. It wears very well for me. There are not more than about half a dozen other whiskies which would even be in the conversation for a once and for all occasions choice for me.

5 months ago 1Who liked this?

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