Talisker has always been a favourite of mine. It was the second bottle of single malt I bought and my first experience of peat. I’ve been a fan ever since and it pains me that I don’t currently have a bottle.
One of my Talisker goals has always been to try something at cask strength. Something I’ve somehow managed to somewhat fail at. Not just because I can’t be bothered with 57 degrees, but also because there isn’t a lot of it apart from old releases like this next one.
And before you start getting crazy jealous, no this isn’t the Sherry cask release from 2001 that gets collectors wet and heaps of money poured on top of it. No, this is the much less hyped refill version from 2003.
Talisker 20 (1982) Refill 58.8%
Nose: Intense, classic red apple, black pepper and smoke, burnt thyme, some alcohol poking through.
Water: Opens up with more herbal notes, more fruit and less smoke.
Taste: Intense, peaty, mineral, sea salt, sea spray and wet rocks, red apple, black pepper, then quite soft.
Water: More balance, more red apple and black pepper. More Talisker-esque, oily with lemon citrus.
Finish: Long length. Softer, red apple, dry refill oak. Water makes it more oily, more lemon, tobacco and oily chocolate.
Swims well, almost the more water the better. Gets better and better with time and water, so give this one time! A little disappointing though, I was expecting bigger things from this and it didn’t really deliver. Much prefer the 30yo 2011 release myself.
Thanks for reading!
Scotch Review #558
Whisky Network Review #661
Network Average: 74.7
Best Score: 93
Worst Score: 22
60-64 Just About OK
65-69 Ok to Good
75-79 Very Good
Full Disclosure Disclaimer: I currently work as a Brand Ambassador for Penderyn Distillery. The views expressed here are purely my own and do not reflect the views of Penderyn Distillery or The Welsh Whisky Company. I try to maintain as much objectivity as I can but feel free to take my reviews with as big a pinch of salt as you like. Furthermore, my rating scale is NOT based on a Parker type wine scoring scale or a school/college/university % or A-F grade score. You can find more on my scoring here. I apologise for any seemly low or 'bad' scores given with my system and am sorry I can't say only nice things. Please keep in mind that I am ethically compromised and am unable to produce 100% unbiased reviews.