No distillery visit is truly complete unless you bring home a distillery exclusive bottling, right? While I have not yet had the pleasure of visiting Talisker myself, I have been able to secure this bottle via a friend. This was the distillery exclusive over ten years ago. Yes, bottled in 2007! I poured it at a tasting and it scored off the charts.
The nose is as sharp as a knife and quite salty. Wet rocks in the surf, thunder clouds in the sky, lamp oil, course sea salt, periwinkles, candle wax, thyme, black pepper and shells on the beach. A dry smoke develops, reminding me a bit of exhaust fumes. Boy, oh, boy! To be honest, it is not as complex as the 175th or Friends release – it is even somewhat one-dimensional – but what a powerhouse!
The first sip is a slap in the face. Muhammad Ali just nudged me… hard! Big peat, sweet malt, sugared lemon peel that is suddenly outmaneuvered by all kinds of salty notes. Liquorice, pepper and a truckload of salt. Oysters and beeswax… You’d think this doesn’t work, but it works like a charm. Not very complex, true, but so outstandingly satisfying.
And than the finish…. So extremely long and every more salty that the taste.
A Talisker for Talisker fans. Those who are not yet fans must give this a go and they’ll come around quickly. Unfortunately almost extinct nowadays.