|Talisker 10 years Single Malt Scotch|
Beware of Bars
The first time I tried Talisker 10 years single malt scotch was in a fairly posh bar. You know. Ground floor of a hotel, adjacent to a fine steak house. It was dimly lit, dark wood panelling, leather wing-tip chairs, a long bar that was polished to perfection, behind which stood a smartly dressed bartender.
The evening was young and I and two other guys from work were exhausted. Drained from all day negotiations, the only order of the evening was to talk about anything, so long as it was not work. For a drink, I ordered Talisker 10. Never had it before. Expected a lot and was disappointed. Just tasted kinda like brine, sea water, pepper and smoke. I suppose it was malty and not poor to taste. But not stellar either. What happened?
Months and years later, subsequent tastings of Talisker proved far more enjoyable. This lead me to conclude that the bar probably had the bottle open for a long time. So, moral of the story: beware of bars. I have been in bars that purport to specialize in scotch whisky only to find many bottles with an inch of spirit left in them, sitting for a year or more resulting in a considerably diminished flavor profile. Oxygen is the enemy of whisky. Once you open that bottle, you're on the clock. Ideally, you want to finish the bottle within six months. I find that after the six month point you are pushing it unless the bottle is 3/4 full (in which case you have another 6 months to finish it).
If the bartender reaches for the whisky with two fingers left in it, I will tell him to drop it and get me a new one.
Refined smoke. Lemon bread. Very enjoyable.
Light bodied. Sweet malted barley followed by billowing smoke and banana. And finally the peppercorns appear.
Drying sea salt, slight dulse and brine.
Tired of the Speyside honey/cinammon flavor profile? If so, try Talisker. Very unique and at first might throw you for a curve, but you will think about it and come back for more. A classic if there ever was one.
I have noticed that upon opening the bottle, this scotch is quite peppery, but that quality is tamed by exposure to air. Taming this lion of a scotch is fine. He still has his claws, so long as you tame the bottle completely within six months! Highly recommended to novices and the serious scotch nut. Reasonable price too. Often can be found on sale too.
P.S. For another review on this site conducted by a serious Talisker nut, click here.
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