Whisky Connosr
Menu
Shop Join

Talisker 57º North

Average score from 22 reviews and 69 ratings 89

Talisker 57º North

Product details

  • Brand: Talisker
  • Bottler: Distillery Bottling
  • ABV: 57.0%

Shop for this

What next?

  • Add to cabinet
  • Add to wish list
@RianC

Reviewed by @RianC

12 1391/100

Talisker 57º North

Many good folk on here recommended this and I was hesitant. Thanks to @victor and many others for convincing me to take the plunge!

Bottle has been open about 7 weeks with over two thirds left.

Nose - Surprisingly soft on the alcohol for its strength. This can easily be drunk neat. Dense, toffee'd malt with cracked black pepper, iodine, Bolton Fish Market at the start of the day and an array of spice, but ginger and something akin to Chinese five spice stand out. Thick honey. Fresh and clean. Wonderful.

Adding a quarter of a teaspoon of water: Lovely swirling when adding the water that lasts a long time. More peat and pepper for sure.

Taste - Almost tar like in texture. Lovely warming dram with the toffee and a slight figgy sweetness with some honey coming through. The peat comes into the development more. With water, again more of a peaty tang attack on the tongue.

Finish - Quite long and peaty with an almost refreshing dryness from the wood. With water it's a little longer and the sweetness keeps going after the peat has subsided. Nice balance of sweet and sour actually. After a minute or so there's a slight milky coffee with pepper taste that lingers nicely at the back of the throat.

I was very lucky to pick this up for £50 (usually around £70) and had I more cash to spend i'd pick up a couple at that price. This is a graceful bruiser that encapsulates lots of what makes Scotch malt whisky so appealing. Fit for a fireside or a summers evening - really!

@RianC, thanks for your very nice review.

Talisker 57 Degrees North is my everyday Talisker. It takes air extremely well, and will taste good many months and even years after opening it. Sometimes it needs air at first to get to it good zone.

@RianC Heathrow £75 but that's a litre. So £52,50 equivalent for a 70cl.

@OdysseusUnbound

This is a sample generously given to me by @Nozinan on November 13/2017. The bottle was opened in January 2017, gassed after each use and 1/2 full when the sample was poured.

Talisker is one of those whiskies I think I could identify blind. Its distinct aroma and flavours are unlike anything I’ve encountered so far in my whisky journey. There’s no age information I can find on this whisky, but after tasting it, my best guess is that 57 North is a vatting of 10-14 year whiskies.

Tasting Notes

  • Nose (undiluted): friendly for something bottled at 57% ABV. Classic Talisker minerality, vegetal iodine (more seaweed than medicinal), slight chalkiness, brine, black pepper, moderately smoky. There are some notes reminiscent of grapefruit (the "meat" not the pith). As this sits in the glass, there are some cinnamon, oak and wood varnish notes popping through. Very complex and pleasant nose.

  • Palate (undiluted): hot, peppery arrival, prickly, almost hoppy on the tongue, the slight chalkiness returns, developing some citrus (orange zest, maybe?), with the cinnamon and oak tannins popping back up.

  • Finish: Medium length and drying. This was a bit shorter and “pulled” more than I expected. A bit of brine remains with some smoke, oak and fruitiness lingering.

With water, the wood varnish (cask?) notes come forward on the nose, as does the brine and seaweed. the smoke retreats to the back, as a kind of echo. As the whisky sits, a kind of industrial machinery aroma lingers (if that makes any sense). On the palate, with water, the smoke becomes more evident as does the cinnamon and wood spice. The finish is not quite as drying with water, but shorter than I expected. Very pleasant nonetheless. I nursed this pour for about 2 hours while doing laundry and with time, it got more interesting. At the very end of the finish, I was detecting a bit of unripe banana.

I really enjoyed this whisky, but I’m a Talisker fan so make of that what you will. I’ve been fortunate; I’ve never hit a bad bottle. This sample was no exception.

I really like this one as well as the 10yr. I have two bottles of the 10 currently. The 57N is so peppery and delicious. I get some pickles. Hard to come by in Nashville.

@RianC That’s $93 CAD. The 10 is $99 here. I would not hesitate for a second at that price. I’m hoping to get a bottle of 57N at a more sane price (it’s $175 here) in the near future.

Edit: I’d love to hear about the 18 Year old. I’ve never even seen that one here.

@Nozinan

I picked up a 1L bottle of this at Ben Gurion airport in March of 2015. At $110 US it was extravagant (but it’s $175.50 CAD for 750 cc in Ontario at the time of writing 2.5 years later) but it was something I was keen to try. As with many of my “to try” whiskies of which I have only one bottle, it was quite a while before I was able to open it. In January I pulled a “@Talexander” (meaning I opened something special near the end of a tasting with heavy hitters (both bottles and drinkers)) when one of my friends mentioned she really liked Talisker and I said… oh, I have a 57 N!

Well, it had to be opened sometime and why not in a setting with people who will appreciate it? But it seems one of them appreciated it a lot. I expect I depleted 300-400 of that bottle that day. My one friend helped herself to 2 large glasses. When her Uber ride arrived I asked her if she wanted a sample vial (to save the rest) and she was very thankful. When I arrived with a 2 oz bottle she swallowed the 30-40 cc left in her glass in one go, and poured herself a 2 ounce sample… Oy.

Since that time I’ve shared it with my uncle once and looking back it was last opened in February. It’s just under 2/3 full and has been gassed after each opening.

This expression is reviewed in my usual manner, allowing it to settle after which I take my nosing and tasting notes, followed by the addition of a few drops of water, waiting, then nosing and tasting. I used the standard


Nose:

Neat – Fresh, fruity, syrupy. touch of peat but well-integrated. Some caramel and cinnamon spice. In the Bourbon glass the alcohol is a lot more prominent but the aromas are the same. Nice nose 22/25

With water – The fruitiness is enhanced. Less pepper, less peat. Maybe less complex but very pleasant. Empty glass retains its freshness. In the bourbon glass the nose is hotter and a little more muddled. (21.5/25)

Taste:

Neat – Spicy, peppery and sweet on first sip, dry and peppery in the development with a hint of lemon citrus (no pith). No noticeable difference in the bourbon glass. 22/25 Water didn’t seem to affect the taste much, but my attention may have been distracted. It did add some effervescence. (22.5/25)

Finish: Long, astringent, bitter with pepper fading. 22/25 The late development and finish is sweeter and peppery but not bitter with water and time. (23/25)

Balance: Nose and palate complement each other nicely. The flavours themselves are also well-balanced. 23/25

Score: Neat - 89/100 With Water: 90/100


I think this is one of the whiskies that grows in the glass the longer it’s allowed to sit. I’ve been nosing and tasting this for a couple of hours and it’s growing on me more and more.

I hope one day to be able to snag a back-up to this bottle. In the meantime, I've learned a lesson about sharing.

It's a shame when you're taken advantage of but, on the plus side, she must owe you! This is one I'm yet to try - I love the standard 10 and this sounds very enticing. Sounds like a bit less peat and or smoke but still got the pepperiness of the 10?

@Nozinan thank you for the review, another affirmation that this Talisker bottling is a winner.

@casualtorture

Talisker 57 Degrees North. Named as such because of the distillery's coordinates. Also bottled at 57%. Cool marketing that I don't mind because of the symbolism to the distillery. Bottle has been opened for a week and is 50% full. Yes we've been drinking it that fast...

Nose: Sea salt, smoke, seaweed, and pickles. Also a nagging cleaning agent that I can't get past. Like clorox or something.

Palate: Nice! A blast of flavours. White pepper, salted smokey pickles, hickory bbq sauce, spicey oak that is balanced with a sweetness of overly ripe oranges.

Finish: Medium-long with smoke and salted pickle.

Overall: Aside from the weird cleaning agent in the nose, this is a delightful whisky. Strong, similar notes to the 10yo. This is big boy Talisker. I tried with water but it just dulled the flavors and made it slightly sweeter. Better without it.

You waited only 6 days instead of 10 days before reviewing...don't be surprised if you see more changes, for the better. I think that you'll like this one better if you don't gobble it down quickly.

One of my bottles of 57 North showed a lot of change around 10 days open; another took much much longer.

@Ol_Jas As I am now drinking Lagavulin 8, I can confirm it is good, reliable and good value.

@Georgy

This whisky, although young, is a really interesting one for anyone who loves complex whiskies that change with time and with different amounts of water. Plus, it's not chill-filtered :)

NOSE: right away there is beautiful combination of sweet and savory notes: pickles, pickle juice, a touch of seaweed, smoke, oak, big sea salt note and honey. It's a very many-faceted nose. With water you get that signature Talisker coastal freshness, burned wood, some peat, some toffee, vanilla and creamy nuts. There are also some citrus zest notes and a hint of mint as well.

TASTE: very salty, oily, big, sweet, a ton of pepper with pickles, smoke, burned wood and creamy nuts covered in honey. A touch of BBQ sauce as well. Underneath of these big flavors you get some fresh fruits as well. Tannins, damp earth. All that is lovely. However, you do get some rough young alcohol notes along with some metallic note which then transitions into the finish.

FINISH: fairly long with salt, pepper, some mineral notes and fruity honey.

OVERALL IMPRESSION: this one would have been that much more interesting, if they'd given it more time to mature. It is an interesting experience, and Talisker lovers will certainly love it because it does have all the Talisker 10 signature notes. However, it is done in a slightly rushed and, as a result, excuse my French, half-assed way. That's why it is definitely not a winner. Loved the nose experience, though.

@Georgy, is this review from a bottle of your own, or a sample? I've found that 57 North needs time to open up from a new bottle. Sometimes that time is small, as for my first bottle, which required 10 days to blossom. The second bottle I opened, from a different batch took a very long time to jell and mellow out, like 18-24 months, but it eventually occurred. My point is to say, that if what you are having is not too together yet, and you have a whole bottle, just give it more time. When that bottle jells, which I expect that it will, "Young" will not be an adjective that will come to your mind.

Despite having to wait for it sometimes, Talisker 57 Degrees North is my absolute go-to among the Taliskers. When in bloom, it is thick, intense, and righteous. From an unknown batch I will drink that NAS over the 10 year old every day of the week, and most of the time I am more in the mood for the intensity of 57 North over the beauty and mellowness of the Talisker 18 yo.

Of course with whisky what you have tasted for yourself is 100% of your experience. All I am suggesting is that if you have the chance for a bottle of 57 North, get it, and wait it out if necessary. It will be worth it.

@paddockjudge You can also compare this issue to cigars. Since I don't live in the US, I have the privilage of smoking cuban cigars every once in a while. And with Cubans, as you've probably heard, you get a lot of issues with the draw of a cigar. Sometimes, when the draw is tight - I can give such a cigar a chance to open up by giving it time and a quick massage. I do that because I don't like wasting cigars (as well as money) and because I am pretty patient. However, my girlfriend certainly won't wait. When the draw is bad, that's enough to put her off it. And a lot of people ditch such cigars or ask for their money back. The same can be said about a whisky. If you open up a bottle, and you're not a hard core connoisseur who is willing to give all the time that whisky needs, you may very well end up disappointed by finding it bland. If that happened time and time again to my whisky brand, I'd have someone see to that as quickly as possible so as not to turn my customers away from it. I understand that when you're as large as Diageo, you stop caring about losing a customer here and there, since people will still be buying this stuff, but still I do believe the producers could try harder to deliver right from the start.

@Uisgebetha

Equating latitude with alcohol content seems quite a clever bit of marketing to sell a young NAS almost cask strength whisky at a moderately inflated price or am I just an old cynic. It’s a good line if the whisky stands up to scrutiny.... Amber gold coloured, as all Taliskers seem to be. Plenty of alcohol pungency on the nose which is to be expected without water. Biscuity malt, smoky pine and some almonds, but not the usual complexities from this distillery.

Viscous and full bodied with a fair amount of alcohol burn, but it’s not too hot to drink neat. Black pepper, ginger, pine smoke, malt, almonds, apricot and vanilla all play a part, but it’s far less open and accessible than other malts from this distillery. The finish is long drying and smoky.

A little water causes a haze to form, and sadly seems to takes all the life out of this malt, I just get a dusty cardboard effect with muted washed flavours. I don’t recommend diluting this malt with more than a few drops of water.

Not my favourite expression of Talisker and not the one I’d recommend, but still a very good malt.

@Aulay

Wow, what a powerful nose with bold Peat smoke (reminiscent of a Laphroaig) with just a hint of toffee and salty sea air in the background. At 57%, this whiskey has a solid peppery burn to it with the sea salt and a subtle toffee background. Again on the finish the pepper just takes over for a moment and then just quietly fades away behind the smoke and honey. Strong and powerful. Slainte!

@talexander

I reviewed this whisky already, in March 2012. I've re-posted by review below. Hmmm I think I was a better writer then than I am now! I have to say, my assessment of it hasn't changed at all. I'm tasting it side-by-side with the 2000 Distiller's Edition, and it's amazing how similar, and yet different, they are to each other. Anyway, here's my original review:

"If you've read my earlier reviews, you'd have noticed I've worked my way through the Talisker 3-pack. Previous reviews were the Distiller's Edition and the 10 Year Old. Now - my favourite.

A coppery colour in the glass. The nose is startling, with ginger, peat, sea spray and smoked paprika. Water brings out lavender, believe it or not.

In the mouth, there is a flash of hot alcohol, much hotter than the nose. Then cayenne pepper! Wow! Mouthcoating but not syrupy, with very mild caramel with peat. Amazing! It doesn't feel like water really dilutes it; rather, it explodes the smoke wonderfully in the mouth and enriches the finish, which is deep, rich and long.

It is a beautifully balanced whisky. Each element is just different enough from the other to make it interesting, but in the same range so as to be harmonious. The peat doesn't dominate as it does in some Islays; but rather envelopes all the other salty and spicy elements while letting the mouth feel rich.

I love Talisker, absolutely one of my favourites, though I've only had these three expressions. This distillery exists on an island which really has no business having a distillery (though in 1823 it had seven); and it almost burned down in 1960. But the Island of Skye's sea spray and briny atmosphere, among other elements, has made its way into the whisky, justifying its struggles."

Port Ellen is dead, just like my marriage.

That's supposed to be funny.

Actually, I'm commenting because this most enthusiastic of Talisker 57 reviews is fueling my own enthusiasm for the order I hope to receive in the mail next week. The US-based folks on this site are probably familiar with how the 57 is, for reasons unknow to me, not available normally here—thus the references to duty free purchases above. And shipping's a bitch from overseas. Well, I recently found an online whisky shop website that's shipping bottles to the US with free(!) shipping while they get off the ground. I've never had the 57, but all the reviews place is squarely in my zone, so I took the unprecented step (for me) of immediately ordering two bottles that I've never even tasted. If they arrive intact—or at all—and especially if I don't get stuck with a big duty bill—I'll be pretty stoked next week. One bottle to enjoy the hell out of with no worry about losing it forever afterward, thanks to the second bottle.

For what it's worth, I have noticed quite a bit of difference between my first and second bottles of Talisker 57 North, from the git-go. My first bottle, a 700 ml from the UK, started subdued, and then blossomed beautifully within a couple of weeks of opening. It was a fabulous drinker from then to the end of the bottle. Worth every one of the 95 points I gave it. The second bottle, of a different size, 1 Litre, and from another source, Duty Free, didn't come quite as alive early, and I am still watching it. The jury is still out on that one for me. I will be quite disappointed if it does not evolve into something close to what I had with the first bottle. I am still hopeful, but nervous, about that one.

@Volks

The 57 north. A modern whisky, young, bottled naturally at a higher strength (though not cask strength presumably) in a similar style to the Glenfiddich Distillers, Auchentoshan Valinch, Aberlour A'bunadh and others, a whisky for the times and for the tasting.

  • Nose: pretty harsh and windswept, more full on phenols and peat, with lots of pepper and spicy stuff, lurking in the background are the sweeter Talisker notes, fudge and drinking chocolate, also a pretty fresh tequila note. With water prominent cocoa note, tequila again with plenty of sea side salty stuff, reasonably phenolic too, other than the tequila there is a note I really can’t pin down, it’s just really fresh…. something, hmmmm that’s annoying,

  • Pallet: spicy, pretty hot and alcoholic, some drinking chocolate again and tequila (blanco or silver tequila), but pallet is pretty tough to call. With water pepper and chili attack, lots of coffee, mocha flavours, honey, also some damp earth, dark chocolate, fudge fading into raw peat (somehow?), then going a bit vegetal.

  • Finish: seemingly characteristic of Talisker its pretty swift, tequila note lasts through the pallet, With water earthiness really carries nicely and peat rising and falling, finally it goes very very dry.

  • Mark neat – 8.0, with water – 8.7.

A whisky for the moment and not a bad one for the cabinet, a good price ($130AUD). When compared to the aforementioned rivals it is on the higher side (A'bunadh and Fiddich - 110AUD and Valinch 90AUD) but i still think its pretty good value. This for me demonstrates the true nature of Talisker better than the 10 year old. Be very scientific with the water though, those maritime notes seem to drown a bit quick.

@systemdown

57 North @ 2013-10-04

A mini-note this time. My favourite whisky bar received a shipment of Talisker bottles recently to add to their burgeoning collection (some 200 or more whiskies) - I spied the 57 North and Port Ruighe as the box was being unpacked and made a mental note to try them.

The 57 North in particular I had been wanting to try for a very long time and finally, on a recent Friday afternoon, after a long week at work, decided to try both side by side at the bar. The 57 North followed the Port Ruighe.

Nose: Quite tame on first impressions - much less smoke than the Port Ruighe. More akin to the standard 10 year old. Dry, ashy smoke. Sea breeze, crisp sweet malt. Coconut! There's also a port/sherry influence here as well although it is quite understated. With water: Toffee and eventually wisps of BBQ and/or hickory sauce.

Taste: BIG arrival of citrus, peat and brine. Big "tang" accompanied by a good helping of spices. Eventually softens to big, chewy malt with the peat present throughout. The dry port/sherry notes are here again - the feel of red wine tannins. Big palate that just keeps on going, like waves crashing on a rocky shoreline. Lacks the strong peppery buzz of the standard 10 year old however, but definitely one to savour!

Finish: Bitter chocolate, peat, tannins, vanilla, spices, citrus, brine. Long, lingering and warm. A touch of dry oak at the back.

Balance: Great balance throughout. Extra strength really helps here! Robust and more-ish. Big but lovely with just a few drops of water - I didn't feel the need to add any more than that.

Score: N22 T22 F22 B23 = 89

I would recommend this to any Talisker fan who hasn't already tried it. I could very well see myself replacing the Talisker 10 in my cabinet with this expression.

Yeah shame about the perceived decline in the quality of recent Taliskers. I mean, they're still good, but the way Talisker of old is talked about in whisky circles, maybe there is something in it.

I'm not particularly a Talisker fan (for me it's just another distillery) but I can definitely see where the high expectations come from for any new bottlings.

considering the stronger and stronger shackles put on the 10 year old, this 57 is now the go-to Talisker, although i used to love the D.E, but don't know if i should buy the new one if quality has affected it to the point of ruin. Bit of a risk but Talisker is worth it..still.. Very good review, recognize some tastes i got from my actual bottle, have 2 in my cabinet as of this moment.

@SquidgyAsh

As most people who've spent more then two minutes with me know, I'm a Talisker fan, in fact I'm more then a Talisker fan, I'm a Talisker freak.

The 10 year old is one of those bang for buck entry level whiskies, the 18 year old is Talisker refined. I own three different bottles of Talisker 25 year old, two bottles of Talisker 10 year old, a Talisker 35 year old, two bottles of Talisker 22 year old from Gordon & MacPhail and a bottle of Talisker 57 North.

You get the idea I think.

Now all that being said I'd heard for years how good the Talisker 57 North was and so about six months ago I took the plunge and picked up a bottle. Sadly I wound up doing this RIGHT before the price drop so I wound up paying quite a bit more then it now runs, but was it worth it?

Well it was an easy purchase for me with my love of Talisker and it was with more then a little excitement that I cracked the bottle open the night before my wife and I left for Scotland.

Last night was my tasting for the official review. The bottle had been open from the end of May with a nine tenths fill level.

I pour the whisky into the glencairn and immediately get the aromas that I expect out of Talisker, even without my head being near the glass.

Vanilla, white peppers, soft peat smoke, a little lemon zest, aged oak, some soft fruit notes: strawberries and a hint of sea shore: salt and seaweed.

Love, LOVE the nose! It's everything that I think of when I think of Talisker and just nosing it puts a smile on my face.

Time for a taste though!

First off it is a bigger whisky then the 10 year old, but it doesn't give you any indication of it's 57% abv.

Vanilla, lemon and orange zest, some bitter oak tannins, white peppers, salt, soft smoke, quite a bit of spice, hints of charred oak.

Enjoyable body, thick, a little hot especially for those not used to cask strength whiskies, but still very enjoyable.

The finish is long with caramel and lemon and orange zest.

An enjoyable whisky, but for me the orange zest is a little too overpowering. However I know quite a few guys who are going to LOVE this whisky, while I just enjoy it.

A couple of quick notes regarding the name and abv on this whisky. Talisker 57 North is marketed as a cask strength Talisker. It's not though as the whisky has been watered down to bring it down to the 57 % abv so it's not a true cask strength however it is Talisker on steroids.

The other note about this whisky is that the name actually comes from the distilleries high northern latitude and the watering of the abv down to 57% is also due to the name and continuing with that theme.

I paid roughly $160 for my bottle, which while I enjoy the whisky I don't think I'd purchase it again at that price.

However thankfully the price within the last few months has dropped down to roughly $120 to $135 which I'd happily pay for a bottle of this. If you ever would like a chance to try a high abv Talisker this is definitely going to be your bang for buck whisky as from here on what moving into 20/25/30/35 year old Taliskers the price jumps enormously!

I'd quite happily introduce this whisky to my friends who enjoy a more intense whisky and is in my opinion still one of the Talisker core range whiskies that are worthy of owning.

Nicely enthusiastic review. I commend you for your honesty as well. I bought my 57 North in St Maarten @ $80-USF(for a 40oz). BTW- St Maarten has the best liquor prices in the world. The 57 degrees North- great whiskey @ $80. Not an $160 bottle.(and I love my Taliskers too). The 18 year old has so much more depth/complexity to offer. I'm going to go pour a 57-North right now. Slainte!

Your review inspired me to post my notes on the 57 North as well! A very decent Talisker. I'm pretty sure I'll pick up a bottle as soon as finances will allow me to!

L

For anyone that read my earlier review about the standard bottling from Skye the Talisker 10, you would know that i am a fan of the talisker taste, if you didn't, now you know. I am currently writing the second review of a double whsiky night me and my girl had yesterday, rediscovering two malts we've had close to our hearts ;)

In reviewing the 10, i did assess why the decrease in quality has been happening and my opinion on the contributing factor which is Diageo's management (especially their policy with colouring and chill-filtration). Talisker luckily seems to be a malt that tolerates the shackles of chill-filtration, but it seems as though that tolerance hasn't done any favors to it the last 2 years, seeing as Diageo seems to have increased the chill-filtration. The same aggressive chill-filtration process that has crippled the likes of Cragganmore (to name but one, but cragganmore is a good example). Luckily Diageo does some interesting special editions and bottlings. One i am very happy about, is this one, the 57 degrees north. The name comes directly from the latitude on which, the distillery on the isle of Skye, sits. It also defines the strength, at a hefty 57% or 114 proof. For all that know and love Talisker you know what to expect.

Nose: Kippers on a kelp, dancing from the winds of an incoming rain storm. Iodine, salty seashores, seabreeze. Pungent, pungent smoke with a damp peat. Treacle toffee with more smoke and finally seaweed.

Palate: Toffe&Peat intense treacle/malty arrival. Smoke is all-around but much softer than the fiery talisker of old. This is more focus on gentle damp peat/smoke and seashore/malt qualities than the peppery fiery character that Talisker is associated with. Aniseed and soft spices, just a bit of black pepper and peppery oak. Wonderfull, wonderfull iodine rich peat!

Finish: Pungent peat smoke, toffe treacle with nutmeg and spices. Lemon juice and apple peels with a cereal malty note holding up, an unfortunately, not-so-long finish.

A very big but friendly giant of a talisker the arrival and developement are huge, although it misses the peppery fire of a familiar Talisker this one delivers on a different level. There is just a ton of flavour in the iodine rich seashore peat with the complex treacle malt and toffee character.

This would score just above 90 if it wasn't for the dissapointingly short finish. Shame! I will do another tasting after some air has gone in the bottle b/c this review is only after having tasted the bottle for a third time and i see some changes already. I really do hope it changes the finish next time though, it would put this malt back at epic malt heights. Because my first 57 degrees north 18 months ago was just that "epic". For reference that early 2012 bottling would've gotten 94 points!

Howdy! Didn't see that you'd reviewed this recently too. Sounds like we largely agree on this one, even down to the same score!

The only obvious difference is in the finish. In my review, I had already had a dram of the Port Ruighe beforehand, which might have skewed my perception of the duration of finish (the more drams you have, the finish seems to "stack").

It could also be that my sample was from a bottle that had more drams poured from it already - increased oxidation may lengthen a finish. Anyway, nice review, looking forward to your follow-up notes to see how this one changes for you.

On a side note RE: Diageo's increased chill filtration recently - is this an opinion of yours, or is there some documentary evidence for it? Cheers.

Hahaha yeah! i saw you posted yours recently, so i decided to take a look and was intrigued by how similar (but different) our experiences were (and indeed the score). It's possible, as you say, that the finish stacked up with the Ruighe (haven't tried that one yet), although it might be because your bottle has more air, i don't know. As to the chill-filtration it isn't documented to the point of the "extent" of the process, it's more to do with consumers feedback on different forums about the Diageo whiskies. They have percieved an increasingly artificial and stripped out flavour profile over the years, so it's just an opinion, albeit a qualified one, and one i agree with. Although the fact that Diageo use chill-filtration is documented (i actually called them myself), the part that is opinion is about the extent of that said process. Thanks for the comment and feedback :)

@Nemesis101

You know the non-chill filtered warnings - 'this whisky may develop cloudiness with the addition of water'. That's somewhat of an understatement with this as it becomes virtually opaque. It ends up looking like proper Devon and Somerset Cider.

Anyway I added water straight away to this - 57% is too much to try neat, (but that's just me). First thing I've noticed is how much this clings to the glass. Tiny beads are scattered all round the side and don't look to be forming legs at all.

On the nose I first get toffee apples with an underlying peat. In fact I can taste the peat at the back of my throat now before even sipping any of it. A hint of smoky bacon too. Then a slightly coarser peppery edge.

I get a sweet-smoky palate initially, followed by an oily mouthfeel with a good level of brininess. Kippers too. This then descends into a peppery and pleasantly bitter finish.

Talisker 57° pulls no punches. It lets you know you're drinking a damn fine malt. It's certainly not subtle, but it is very good and a few notches above the 10, (with a price to match). If you want a subtler Talisker, try the 18, (been a few years I tried that one however).

I

This is my first review so go easy

While nosing this whisky I instantly get the peat and smoke that defines Talisker. Right off that I get a slight sweet scent infused with the smoke. It instantly reminds me of maple syrup mixed with ginger. There is definitely a briny tinge to it, which reminds me of the Atlantic during a storm.

The palate is somewhat sweet on the tongue as you roll it around. After a couple seconds it opens up and the pepper, black and cayenne, hit your mouth in a turncoat flavour. The finish is as expected from a Talisker; it's smoky and leaves the mouth with a nice tingle.

I bought this at Duty Free and I wish I could get it domestically. It's a strong but phenomenal product which should be brought out during a chilly rainy night.

Certainly not worth the $175 that they're asking for...but maple smoked bacon works as the title. The LCBO's pricing of Cask Strength whiskies is a bit odd, as there are quality, aged cask strengths available for less than half of what they want for the 57' North.

As much as I want a bottle of this to replace the 200ml bottle that came as part of the Talisker Collection (now mysteriously vanished from the LCBO's shelves), I'll be picking it up elsewhere.

Title seems wrong, it was my initial thoughts and I had nowhere else to write it down at the moment. Beginner's mistake!

@Victor

Talisker 57 Degrees North is bottled at an ABV to match the latitude of the distillery on the Isle of Skye. At this ABV the whisky is at "Special Strength", not precisely at Cask Strength, but is most likely at very close to Cask Strength. The reviewed bottle was opened November 22, 2012, and now only 1/4 remains. Tasting notes are from the bottle opened for two weeks. 57 D North is a rare bottling to find in North America, and the reviewed bottle was hand-carried to me from the UK. I was recently able to replenish supply of it at an auto duty free in Ontario

Nose: intense penetrating vanilla, intense black pepper and briney peat, some smoke, and a nice sweet underlying malt. Beautiful

Taste: on the palate smoke and both sharp peat and sweet peat are stronger than in the nose. There are lovely malted barley flavours, sweet honey-licorice, the Talisker pepper-brine, and a slight hint of wine-finish flavours. This is glowing and resonant, but the bottle had to be open for two weeks to get this way

Finish: long honey-peat-smoke-brine. If you like these flavours together, then this is terrific

Balance: for me this Talisker 57 Degrees North really works and is a real treat. It is muscular and aggressive, which Big Flavours lovers are likely to enjoy. Stay away from this if you don't like peppery brine, peat and smoke emphasised. Pay attention to making sure that your bottle is fully opened up before apparaising it, though. On Day One of opening this would only have rated 86 from me.

N.B. water added a beautiful floral element to the nose and slightly lessened the other flavours. The palate and finish became much sweeter with water, with the smoke diminished, but the sweet component of the peat brought to the fore

I find it interesting that a duty free store in Ontario carries the 57 North, but the LCBO does not, unless it is part of the rapidly disappearing Talisker Collection. I also find it intriguing that the Talisker Collections sold in the U.S. contain the 18yo, not the 57 North. Wonder what the reason for the difference is? We cracked my small bottle of the 57 North as part of a Talisker Vertical on my birthday, and it was every bit as good as @Victor says it is...I didn't even notice the higher ABV, and there was no burn at all...phenomenal stuff!

@PeatyZealot, it is hard to say the mix of ages in the 57 North. With no age statement, the distillery has the ability to tweak the whisky any way that they would like. I don't get too concerned about the absence of age statements relative to what I think about the taste of the whisky. After all 95% 30 yo whisky combined with 5% 3 yo whisky is still officially "3 year old whisky". Does calling it "3 year old whisky" tell the tale accurately? Not at all.

Have you sampled any of the 57 North yet, @PeatyZealot?

@MaltActivist

I've been lucky enough to own multiple bottles of this beauty so I tend to drink this one at will! But I gloat. Let's talk about the nose, shall we? The powerful aromas makes me feel like a captain on a fishing trawler - braving the rough seas and the salty waves that pound the edge of the boat time and again. Strands of seaweed and kelp are flung on the ship in quick succession. No matter how hard the deck hands try they can never rid themselves of that. Out of the corner of my eye I see my first-mate neglecting his duties and tending to a succulent sausage barbecue. In between the sausages are the most delicious pieces of salty fish, sprayed with lemon zest, that I have ever tasted.

I want to discipline him but I can't - something tells me to just accept the things the way they are.

As I bring the crystal nosing glass to my lips I am treated to three distinct emotions. First the full bodied malt announces it's arrival with a touch of salt and a glimmer of smoke. Then, immediately fighting for attention are a tumble of autumn fruits and a lovely soft pudding. As your mind tries to come to grips with the two distinct flavors you are treated to the gentlest of iodine sprayed spices as they signal the end of the journey.

At 57% this is one of the longer finishes I have ever had the pleasure of tasting. If you don't have one I suggest you go out there right now and procure yourself possibly one of the best tasting single malts out there!

@tabarakRazvi, this is a great favourite of mine, as well, though I have only had two tastes of it to date (thanks, @Pudge72). My first bottle of 57 d North is finally within two weeks of me, though. That is very nice that you have had quite a few bottles of it available to you. I would love to put several more into the cabinet.

@Wills, 57 North, DE, and 18 are three rather different whiskies, and different years of DE can be quite different from one another as well. 57 North is the throaty high-test big flavours version of Talisker. Talisker 18 is refined and elegant, by comparison...what I call a "watching the sunset" kind of whisky. I want both of them in my cabinet. I can live without Talisker DE, but some years of DE are quite nice too.

@Wills Thank you for your kind words!

I have only recently managed to procure the 18 year and so will post a review on that soon. It will be interesting to see how it compares with the 57 North though I make it a point not to pit one against the other.

@talexander

If you've read my earlier reviews, you'd have noticed I've worked my way through the Talisker 3-pack. Previous reviews were the Distiller's Edition and the 10 Year Old. Now - my favourite.

A coppery colour in the glass. The nose is startling, with ginger, peat, sea spray and smoked paprika. Water brings out lavender, believe it or not.

In the mouth, there is a flash of hot alcohol, much hotter than the nose. Then cayenne pepper! Wow! Mouthcoating but not syrupy, with very mild caramel with peat. Amazing! It doesn't feel like water really dilutes it; rather, it explodes the smoke wonderfully in the mouth and enriches the finish, which is deep, rich and long.

It is a beautifully balanced whisky. Each element is just different enough from the other to make it interesting, but in the same range so as to be harmonious. The peat doesn't dominate as it does in some Islays; but rather envelopes all the other salty and spicy elements while letting the mouth feel rich.

I love Talisker, absolutely one of my favourites, though I've only had these three expressions. This distillery exists on an island which really has no business having a distillery (though in 1823 it had seven); and it almost burned down in 1960. But the Island of Skye's sea spray and briny atmosphere, among other elements, has made its way into the whisky, justifying its struggles.

The Talisker 57°North is a very good example of the new Talisker - it´s a belter with lots of chilly-catch... As Talisker is one of my Favourite Distilleries I tasted quite a lot of them and I discovered that after my first enthusiastic tastings of the North I tend to give precedence to the 10 and 18 because these Whiskys are less about the bite and more refined. I still think it is a very good Whisky but you should definitely try to get your hands on the 18 year old. If you ever have the chance to try older versions of the 10 (pre-Classic Malts) or even older Stuff from the 1970´s you would be blown away by the beauty of these gems. I had a bottle which was distilled in the late 1960´s over x-mas and this was one hell of a Whisky; complex, smooth and bursting with flavours.

Thank you for the review. It helped make up my mind in selecting the bottle that my cousin was bringing from the Duty-Free shop today. As a fan of the Talisker 10, I can't wait to try out this one. I am intrigued by @maltster's comments, unfortunately I'll have to wait until I go to Scotland to seek for the pre-Classic malts expressions.

@markjedi1

The 57° North obviously refers to the latitude of the distillery on Skye and is the only Talisker available at cask strength (57%, doh!). While it has no age statement, we do know that it matured on American refill bourbon casks. It is offered in 1 liter bottles in the travel retail segment, but you can also find it at the better retail stores. It comes with a compass…

The nose is simply marvellous. After a few minutes of patience, you’ll be catapulted all the way to a rocky and windy coast. Sea weed, bonfire, spent matches and wonderful lime. This one seems to contain a power that is ready to explode on the palate (I hope). The signature pepper sulks in the corner. Unless you dare to pour a few drops of water. Then the pepper screams like there is no tomorrow. Talk about your Gremlin!

It is very creamy on the palate and warms the mouth immediately. The quiet pepper explodes! Very fruity attack, but soon those tastes are overpowered by smoke and especially the pepper, that leaves absolutely no doubt whatsoever on who runs this particular show. That other typical Talisker aroma, sea salt, joins in as well. Yep, this is not for kiddo’s, boys and girls. The high ABV simply sets you on fire. I kid you not, I’m actually breaking a sweat! Adding water brings out more peat, with pepper in close pursuit.

The finish is hot and drying. With water, it’s is actually a salt- and pepper bomb!

I received this sample from our good friend @lucadanna1985 and am very grateful for it. This is one outstanding Talisker. Off to the shower, now. Djeezes!

A lot of airport websites will tell you their Duty Free shop items. For whisky I really find anywhere in UK is the best (www.worldofwhiskies.com) is fantastic, you can pre-order your bottles and pick them up when you get through security!

@talexander...yes indeed...unfortunately the Talisker pack came back at $100 when it used to be $75 for most of 2011!! :( As a result, it has gone lower on the priority list. I may just see if someone I know happens to be travelling, at some point, through an airport that carries it and have them bring me a bottle.

By the way, is there a way to determine what airports/terminals carry particular bottles of whisky?

@lucadanna1985

After six months (ok it's a very short time!) since I first started to follow Connossr I think it's about time to write my first review. Consider the fact that I'm not a native speaker and I'm pretty sure you will grant me your pardon. The bottle I'm reviewing it's a much welcome Xmas gift from my girlfriend, so no better stuff to start with.

Colour: tha whisky shows a beautiful, very brilliant chardonnay colour, with thick and long legs.

Nose: on your first nosing you get a big, vodka-like alcohol impact, but after a few seconds in the glass the subtle peat of most Talikers will reach you just while writing down your first notes. After leaving it rest a bit in the glass you can still feel the big alcohol, but now it is accompanied by a typical Talisker character, as if it was hidden under the high ABV. Nose just gets more and more pleasant with minutes and now its Talisker soul comes out with brine and subtle peat. It's ocean, but this time no breeze, it's much more of the air just before a tempest.

Palate: the high ABV is still evident but not at all unpleasing, on the contrary it coats and warms your mouth. A dram for freezing days (not very usual here in Sicily!). The dram tingles the roof of your palate and reminds me of some white sparkling wines we drink here in Italy. I cannot say if it's the alcohol, the spices or both. On a second sip I find it quite chewy, with some underlying, beautiful vanilla notes, probably coming from the "American oak" casks mentioned on the label. It's briny, with the peat almost absent and coming through only after several sips. Letting a small drop play between tongue and palate also brings out a light fruitiness, while your mouth goes dumb due to the high ABV. After a little time the peat starts to find its place on the palette, but it's always subtle. You can detect both the old and the very young whiskies present in this expression, which bears no age statement. Well crafted!

Finish: finish is lomg, with smoke and the subtle peat I mentioned above, pleasantly mingled with subdued brine.

All the above notes refer to the dram when sipped withouth any dilution. Anyway, a little water is much welcome. It opens up the flavours, bringing out more spices, vanilla, a pleasant wood smoke and the peaty-briny character. There's also something that makes me think of chocolate. Usually I'll have all my drams neat, even if they are cask strength editions, but this really becomes pleasant with a small drop of water (and lucky me, it was spring-source water).

Overall: another beautiful dram from a distillery I look at with awe, not extremely complex but pleasant to discover. I agree with Serge Valentin too, this is two drams (neat and diluted) for the price of one. Thank you Giovanna!

Just had my first dram of this Talisker variation as part of a Tali gift pack that my wife suprised me with. I have to admit, this one knocked me back a bit (it's the highest ABV that I have tried), but definitely had the Talisker traits.

Great commentary about adding water. I will likely try my next dram both without and with water as a comparison.

Hi Pudge72, thanks for commenting! by the way, this has had one of the best interactions with air that I've been able to notice...some of the unpleasant notes (i.e. the "big, vodka-like impact" on the nose)has completely disappeared and the dram definitely got more peaty and...ehm...taliskery!

@galg

Nose: On first whiff, it reminds me of the ocean. Yes, clearly and island malt. Seeweed , Sugar Candied ginger . Some peat, Spice. Quite a briny character. Pepper is not very strong on the nose, however. Quite restrained in comparison to the Palate and finish (see below).

Palate: Oh dear. This is not a malt for the faint of hearted: Peat intertwined with Pepper (Yes, this is a Talisker, what did you expect, eh? ). It’s Quite salty on the tongue, salty and Oily. The 57% ABV is definitely felt on the tongue. This is a big-bodied malt.

Finish: Pepper. Chilly. Habanero. You name it. This is one of the most peppery finishes I’ve ever felt. You think the 10 year old is peppery? Try this hot mama of a finish. It’s absolutely biting. Wow! The spicy and chilly effect stays for a loooooong time. Oh,man!

Your review is prompting me to finally clarify what "pepper" means in a review; does it mean black pepper, or as I now feel from your review, hot peppers? And I am not sure whether you are experiencing a spice, or just hot alcohol? My drams always appear hot/spicey after a meal.

@gaig, I tried Tal 10 for the first time the other evening ... and I'm not sure what you meant by "... this is a Talisker, what do you expect?" I felt Tal 10 was medium smoky (only 25 ppm), dry, very smooth, and had a long, dry, warm, conservative and pleasant finish. Maybe my taster is worn out, but I didn't see anything bold or hot, as you characterize Taliskers ... will try again. Interesting review though, thanks.

i mean, complex pepper and chilly finnish, as in hot pepper. the tali 57 is much spicier than the 10

@chrisrbarrett

Nose is immediate and of salt water and kelp. Colour is coppery. Flavour is revisits the salt air, but becomes increasingly smokey. Finish is long, strong and gets the friction on.

@I_SPEY

Colour : Amber Nose : Iodine, pepper, peat-reek, orange, caramel Palate : Smoke, pepper, coal tar, barley, orange Finish : Hot, peppery. Comment: Perfect whisky - love it!

Popular Talisker whiskies