Google Triple Talisker for 2019

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Hi, this is one of our (almost) daily tastings. Santé!

January 5, 2019





Angus's Corner
From our casual Scottish correspondent
and guest taster Angus MacRaild
Triple Talisker for 2019
Indeed, we might need at least that to get through this already somewhat ominous year. Still, there are very few situations in life which a good Talisker cannot improve in my experience. Let’s try three of them today, one of which I already declared as my favourite recent bottling of 2018 on these pages. Apologies for the belated appearance of the actual notes themselves.


Talisker 8 yo 2009/2018 (59.4%, OB ‘Special Releases’, first fill American oak hogsheads, 4680 bottles) Talisker 8 yo 2009/2018 (59.4%, OB ‘Special Releases’, first fill American oak hogsheads, 4680 bottles)
Colour: light gold. Nose: rather punchy and slightly spiritous to begin with. But it quickly begins to settle into some sheep’s wool doused in medicine, salt and pepper, smoked paprika, grist and things like kippers drizzled with iodine, floor cleaner and lemon zest. A potent young Talisker! There’s also some graphite and freshly milled green peppercorns. With water: fresher and almost sparking with these wee touches of yeasty sourdough, baking soda and mineral salts. Given time it moves more towards soft peat smoke, drier herbal qualities and things like caraway and fennel. Really lovely! Mouth: hot BBQ ashes, lime juice, chalk, struck flints, brine mixed with olive oil, mercurochrome, pollen and soda bread. There’s also an earthy and rather farmy side, lots of peppery, watercress and horseradish notes. Notes of cough medicine, lemon balm and herbal toothpaste. Quite a beast! With water: sootier, fatter, oilier, waxier and a touch more fruity while still retaining this nervous and slightly ‘sizzling’ coastal edge. Finish: long, lemony, bready, slightly autolytic, coastal, lingering farmy notes and more mineral aspects. Comments: I kind of forgot to mention that there was also more than a few notes of oak and a sense of ‘designer wood’ in this one, but the sheer ‘Taliskerness’ kind of overwhelmed me I have to say. The wood never dominates or obfuscates the raw character and classiness of the distillate. A terrific young Talisker that waterskis like a pervy Dutch dentist! Maximum entertainment and maximum pleasure.
SGP: 464 - 91 points.


Hebrides 18 yo 1983/2001 (58.0%, Kingsbury, cask #101) Hebrides 18 yo 1983/2001 (58.0%, Kingsbury, cask #101)
I’m afraid I don’t have a picture of the label for this one and I can’t seem to find one online either. But I’m sure you all know the classic Kingsbury white label with red lettering (we’ve found a picture of a sister cask at Muuseo – Editor’s note). Between us, I’m also not 100% certain this is Talisker either... Colour: white wine. Nose: purity and maturity! (that was, to quote Serge, ‘lame’!) But seriously, a beautiful cocktail of seashore, lemon and lime cordials, barley water, brine, grapefruit peel, mint, juniper and dried lavender. Some heather ale, white pepper, stone fruits, elderflower champagne and various shades of wildflower. Surprisingly light for such a high strength - elegant even. With water: sharper, more taut, heightened acidity and more notes of yeast, brine, aspirin, limestone, wispy bonfire smoke, pink peppercorns and daisies. Remains deliciously coastal and fresh throughout. Mouth: superb! Soft fruits, flowers, waxes, light medical tinctures, gooseberry, fennel, chamomile, iodine, lemon wax and a hint of farmyard. With water: earthier, more tertiary, notes of mushroom powder, umami, wax, hessian, camphor and things like canvas and baking sheet. There’s also graphite and lime oil. Pretty thrilling complexity with water. Finish: long, slightly milky, some sour Gueuze beer, tart fruits, flowers, pollens, beach pebbles, peppery and with plenty of waxy citrus rinds. Comments: Pretty certain this is Talisker. And what a beautiful, complex and charming wee Talisker it is. Feels older than 18 and lighter than its ABV would suggest. But then, isn’t that kind of impressive selection exactly what we’ve come to expect from this great Kingsbury series? Reminds me of some of the best official 30 year olds.
SGP: 463 - 92 points.


Talisker 1957 (53.5%, Gordon & MacPhail, 1970s)

Talisker 1957 (53.5%, Gordon & MacPhail, 1970s)
Already something of a legend. Let’s get stuck in... Colour: chestnut. Nose: like nosing a mahogany smoothie! Seriously this is some kind of interstellar, galactic collision of rare hardwoods, wood treatment oils, ancient jumbled workshops, hessian sackcloth, the finest coffee beans, liquefied peat, engine oil, dark crystalised fruits and Dundee cake studded with glazed walnuts, pecans and Brazil nuts. You can also include teas such as darjeeling, earl grey, mint, chamomile and lapsang souchong. There’s preserved lemons, mint julep, ancient dark rum, soft brown sugars, bitter chocolates, wild mushrooms, black cherries, balsamic, walnut wine and an ocean of rancio. Ridiculous whisky and almost embarrassing to write notes for. The kind of whisky that the anti-maltoporn brigade exists to protect us all against. Speaking of which, where the fuck are you guys?! With water: sharper, saltier, fattier, like frying bacon, ointments, toasted nuts, pure peat and black pepper. Seriously, where is the anti-maltoporn brigade? Mouth: leathery, salty, peaty, waxy, liquorice-laden, spicy, darkly fruited perfection! The bitterest chocolate, the purest, saltiest, punchiest rancio. Thick, sappy, oily, peppery, immense and utterly thrilling! Like drinking a 1936 Martin D-45 acoustic! With water: I think we’ll have to censor the rest or we’ll just be here all day and I’ll lose my shit beyond all reasonable hope of redemption. Finish: pretty much as endless, complex and poetic as you may imagine from all my gushing nonsense above. Comments: this whisky already has quite the reputation, so it’s not really a huge surprise. However, it is a timely reminder of just how immense and spellbinding the greatest spirits ever made can be. Everything is just immense: the flavours, the complexity, the intensity, the length, the texture, the balance, the ‘Talisker’ identity - unequivocally a masterpiece. This is the kind of quality that really helps to define what greatness in whisky truly is. A whisky that stops you in your tracks before whisking you away into the heavens...
SGP: 674 - 96 points.



Happy new year to all, and heartfelt thanks to Hans and Gunnar!  







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