Monday, January 18, 2010

Can I Have Chips With That? Talisker 10yo


There are some malts you hear about, often claiming many grand things that sometimes it becomes hard to believe any of them as true. The Talisker 10yo is a seriously grand single malt deserving of it's reputation. Our club is named after the Talisker 20yo, and though I have never had it, I dare say the Talisker 10yo is not far off the mark.

I was first was introduced to the world of Talisker at the D.T.W.C.'s first ever official event (though many unofficial events occurred long before). Not long after at El Capitans bucks evening we had a blind tasting of the Talisker 10yo which everyone flatly failed to recognise. HOW!? Who knows, but I can say since then I have not forgotten the flavour and have desired the purchase of a bottle once my stocks got low enough. Was it as good? Even better, so on with the notes...

Colour: is a dark rich caramel.

Nose: immediately one gets salty, fresh seaweed, with a medium smokey peat. I find it is certainly abrupt and may in fact put a few off that have never had it before because it is so different to most of the other standard release Scotch whisky's here in Australia.

Taste: one gets gets sweet and salty at the same time which plays really well on the senses. After the initial taste one may get iodine, mild peat, earthy spice, and a tickle of alcohol. For all the extremes it is a really amazing balance.

Finish: certainly warming and grows with intensity over several minutes. It is almost as though it moves down to the stomach before proceeding back up with doubled intensity to a warming blaze. A very interesting experience.

Value: at the moment is great and a bottle can easily be picked up for A$75.

If I was to give a dram I would certainly give it a 6 1/2 out of 7. I would award the extra half-point but I really want to taste the Talisker 18yo (and other family members), so I have to leave at least one step on the ladder to climb.

Highly recommend not just for the taste but also the experience.

As a side note following up on the blind tasting comment above it is quite possible that the first time tasting the Talisker 10yo simply lacked focus. It was a busy night with a degree of consumption of cheesy corn chips (or something similar) before hand that probably just totally masked the flavour. I remember liking it but no where near as much as on the 2nd time round at the blind tasting. What had I been eating prior to this blind tasting you may ask? A heavy stew with lot's of earthy flavours, memorably salted and deep texture. Could this have been an influence? Maybe so I am keen to continue experimenting with food and whisky.

Keep it away from the pesky single malt seagulls, as a well salted Talisker will certainly dram their attention.

Dram on!

The Salted Baron,
D.T.W.C.