Another very special old and rare Talisker 25 year old. This was one of the earlier editions before the evil empire brought the abv down to their more standard (though still rather respectable) 45.8%.
While this particular 25 is a knockout dram (and anything over a 90 score should absolutely be considered as such, I’d argue), it’s pretty much running neck and neck with the 2008 25 year old in terms of scoring. Maybe a slight notch higher. Either way…these quarter century malts from Skye were absolute killers prior to the aforementioned emasculation (read: alcoholic reduction). Now…at the new bottling strength…they’re just really, really good, instead of being really, really great.
Those familiar with Talisker in its younger incarnations can likely approximate what’s in this malt, as it’s pretty much blueprint Talisker, but one that’s been allowed to sleep in late. And take my word for it; those extra years have been very kind. All of the more subtle (and deeply buried) fruity notes begin to swim forward at this age. Peat and pepper are loud and clear, of course, but are now a bit more egalitarian when it comes to sharing the spotlight, instead of just elbowing aside the bit players. Works a treat, lemme tell ya.
If you get a chance to sample these older editions, don’t hesitate. A beautiful bit of whisky history in a glass.
Nose: Very creamy. Surprisingly so, actually. Whiffs of smoke and subdued peat. Some neat ‘toasted’ notes as well. Maybe peach. Soft cream pie. Pear and pepper. Lemon and salt. Mature notes of old books and such.
Palate: The arrival and early delivery are creamy as hell too. Crème brûlée-ish almost. Pepper and peat. Fruit syrup. Salt and licorice. Some seriously amped peppered pear and apple notes. Very big and alive.
Thoughts: Great dialogue between the nose and palate on this one. A master class in balance. Exceptional ‘young’ and vibrant older Talisker.
– Reviewed by: Curt
– Photo: Curt