Talisker 25 Year Old (2013 vs 2017) Review

I don’t think I need to introduce Talisker to you my readers, but it’s a review way long overdue as I was always delaying reviewing and publishing the Talisker 25 Year Old 2013 review.

But then I tasted the Talisker 25 Year Old 2017 Release in a blind tasting competition and the opportunity to have a side by side review of both edition was so tempting that I finally gave up and went for it. Let’s check out which edition is better.

Talisker 25 Year Old 2013 Edition (45.8%, 5,772 bottles, £262)

Nose: Soft smoke, honey, dried fruit and then raspberry and strawberry, still quite smoky. Some meat, brine, dry ashes and some tar, red berries juice and red apples peels. After a few more minutes it’s blended together to smoky, coastal and sherry sweetness cocktail. Good

Palate: Soft, sweet honeyed smoked dried fruit and dry ashes, sour old sherry vinegar, raspberry, salt and subtle pepper.

Finish: Medium length, brine, soft sweet dried berries, even some tropical fruitiness, soursweet sherry vinegar, lingering semi dry smoke and oak spice, white pepper.

Wow, the Talisker 25 Year Old from 2013 sets a very high bar, so let’s check how does the 2017 edition fare…

Talisker 25 Year Old 2017 Edition (45.8%, 21,498 bottles, £230/175.45)

Nose: Cleaner, far subtler smoke than the 2013, dried fruit sweetness, honey and vanilla and even some cereals. After a few minutes in the glass salt and a bit more smoky. Overall far less dried fruit and sherry impact and less bold.

Palate: Balanced but leaning to the spicier side, fizzy and more pepper, vanilla, honey, subtle fruitiness, dried berries and lots of salt.

Finish: Medium length, salt, pepper, subtle peat, even subtler fruitiness.

Thoughts: The 2013 was juicier and with noticeable old sherry influence along with velvety smokiness and subtle spiciness while the 2017 is a newer creation with a more modern profile with a focus on the spiciness and coastalness of the Talisker spirit along with some subtle fruitiness. Bottom line? I liked the 2013 far more than the 2017. Price wise there’s a benefit to the 2017 edition which is currently on sale but without the discounts both sports the same price tag and then it’s a no-brainer to go for the 2013 edition.


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