This month we at Dream Whiskies are raising the bar by offering the gorgeous Talisker 25 as the prize in our monthly free-to-enter competition.
Based in Carbost, Scotland on the Isle of Skye, the Talisker distillery was founded in 1830 by Hugh & Kenneth MacAskill. Now owned by drinks giant Diageo, Talisker whisky was the favourite of many notable characters throughout history including Robert Louis Stephenson.
The spirit is most frequently matured in American oak casks. The malt is peated to a phenol level of approximately 18–22 parts per million (ppm), which is a medium peating level. Additionally, the water used for production, from Cnoc nan Speireag (Hawk Hill), flows over peat which adds additional complexity to the whisky.
The distillery began producing special bottlings of the whisky for connoisseurs in the early 2000s, with a 20- and 25-year bottling (where previously only a 10-year and 18-year were available). The 25-year bottling, despite being more expensive than the 20-year bottling, was distributed more widely.
In 2007 Talisker 18-year-old won "Best Single Malt In The World 2007" at the World Whiskies Awards and in 2015 Talisker 10 Year Old won a Double Gold Medal and "Best Single Malt Scotch up to 12 years" in the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
Our bottle of Talisker 25 (worth over £250!) is a single malt Scotch whisky that was predominantly matured in American oak hogsheads with some European oak refill, resulting in some truly spectacular stuff from the beautiful island of Skye that delivers pleasure in abundance while enticing your senses and stimulating your taste buds. Here's what the maker's think....
PRODUCER'S TASTING NOTES
Nose: Unreduced, a quiet nose, not hugely assertive, yet quite maritime. Fresh ship’s varnish. Faint nose prickle. Spicy, briny. Distant smoke. Adding water subdues the sea and raises subtle, sweeter notes.
Palate: At bottled strength, a gentle start, immediately building in intensity. Slow and sweet, then kicks in peppery and hot, with significant balancing bitterness and salt, and a little smoke. This balance bursts across the palate, with a mouth-drying effect. Medium bodied. Drinks powerfully straight. Minerally. Toasty. Appetising. Adding water (30% approx.) gives a slower, sweeter, fruitier start, with the warmth coming in behind this then extending more slowly across the palate. There’s no marked chilli pepper catch in the throat at the end, but pepper is there on the tongue.