Duncan Taylor & Co. was founded in 1938 as a cask broker — an agent for competing distilleries and blended Scotch companies. Soon, they started showing up at distilleries with their own casks to have them filled on site. All the while they built up one of the largest privately-held collections of rare casks. In 2001, experienced industry veteran Euan Shand purchased the company and expanded into a series of new brands and blends to complement their rare cask business with six single malts, two blended malts, three blended Scotches, two Rums, and one Gin.
The Big Smoke 46 is a smoky blend of Whiskies from some of the top Islay distilleries. If you are a fan of peaty, smoky Whisky, they’re all names you know and love. The “46” refers to its 46% ABV (they have a “60” as well). Big, bold, and strong.
So I loved the flavor and nose of this scotch on the front. I'm a fan of a good smokey scotch and this hits that mark... but there's a sweetness that hit me on the end that I'm not a big fan of and brought it down for me. I typically like a little bit of a caramel flavor, so perhaps it was just too much and came across as sugary sweet to me. If someone served this to me, I'd rave over it and be thrilled they know my taste in scotch. However, it's not something I'll likely purchase again.
I really enjoyed this, but then again I like smoked meat, smoked beer, smoked cheese, etc. Nice and Smokey on both nose and palette without the fusel oil taste that peat will sometimes bring
Peaty, slow burn at the end and surprisingly spicy.
Advent #14. I’m not a smoke person so obviously this isn’t for me. I can see why others would like it though.
Smoky with mild burn
I kinda like it. Was surprised when I looked at the card. Figured I would hate it but didn't.
Peaty but good. Just not my favorite
Well, they came up with a great name for this whisky, it is really smokey, so good job there... I does bring me back to being in the woods, or at a campfire, so that’s nice... not sure I’ll buy a whole bottle, but glad I tried it!
What the hell was this? Cremated remains is what this was. Aweful. Just aweful. This should not be offered to anyone ever. If I could give a rating that’s negative I would. Wow.
Holy smoke. Heavy smoke, too heavy for my taste. Not a bad finish, just too overpowering.
Lovely smell, not too complex on flavor
Not bad for Islay. Light smoke. Decent caramel.
Islay is not my go to but I appreciate and enjoy the complexities. Having a hard time stretching my tastes for this one though. Just getting a lot of the peat related notes (smoke, salt, bacon, campfire, etc) while struggling to get the sweeter undertones of vanilla and apple. I can still get there, but not as complex and significant as the heavy hitters more well known for their peat offerings.
Smoke, peat, and fire...it’s okay, but won’t purchase it. It’s not my taste preference.
Further...strong smoke comes across as charcoal tome...I smell and taste charcoal more than I do smoke. Still learning, so maybe I need to taste more.
Mostly smoke and peat for me - not bad, but not my favorite
When I first poured this I was a skeptical. It initially had a bit more of that sort of rubber and iodine scent I find off-putting in a lot of Islay scotch, but that disipated quickly leaving behind a more inviting smokiness with a slightly vegetal undertone. On the tongue it was substantial with a subdued sweetness and a bit of ash, like meat cooked directly in the flames of a campfire, and a lingering saltiness.
I'm reserving about half of each pour from the advent calendar and wondering how the peated whiskies will compare when I try them side by side.
(Advent 2020, #14) In the nose all I got was smoke and peat. Tasting it, there's a lot of that smoke and peat flavor but with a little something else maybe it's the burnt caramel that the card notes? I'm normally not a fan of a big smoky & peaty Scotch, but I don't hate this one, although I don't love it either... I liked it better than the Pork Askaig a few days ago.
I'm still fairly new to the peaty taste of Islays, but I think I found another bottle for the cabinet with this one. It's unmistakably smokey flavor reminds me of sitting in just the right spot as a campfire, not too much, not too little. Under the smoke there are definite prominent
notes of the caramel.
Heavy on the smoke and peat, as expected. Flavor profile was quite similar to the Port Askaig from a few days ago in the Advent calendar, minus the lemon and licorice mix that made that one so unpalatable to me. So that’s an advantage here.
I absolutely love Laphroaig and quite like the Lagavulin that I’ve tried, so I thought I’d be likely to like these other Islays, but there’s something like a strong astringency that I get from the Duncan Taylor and Port Askaig- especially on the nose - that is off-putting to me.
Smoky and peaty, for sure. Balanced nicely with some toasted, sweet notes. Nice smooth finish. Not my preferred dram, but I enjoyed it more than I thought I would.
Nice blend with smokey/peaty notes and a burnt finish.
Big smoke as advertised. A bit hot on the finish. Typically expect a blend to be bit smoother. Might be better on ice. (Advent Calendar Day 14)
Unmistakably Islay. If you like big smoke, medium peat, this is for you. Nose is smoke with sea air int he background.
It's not my favorite style neat, but mixed very well and made for an excellent Rusty Nail. I'd consider a bottle for that purpose.
2020 Advent day 14
Probably would have passed by this blend, but tasing blind I feel like I found a winner. Heavy on the peat and smoke, with plenty more there too.
Heavy smoke, medium- peat. A touch of sweetness. Reasonable complexity. Pleasing, but not life defining. Favorite advent calendar tasting thus far (day 14).
Solid scotch blend, definitely peaty up front with a clean finish and aftertaste that lasts awhile. Worth it for the price.
After dinnerish. Smoky in front of the fire.
Advent Day 14 - Smoke & peat on the nose. On the palate, the smoke is more like that of a beach bonfire.
Nice with a single ice cube, Smokey and peaty flavors
I was hesitant due to my terrible experience on Night 12 with Port Askaig 8-Year-Old, but this was very pleasant! Strong smoke, but lighter on the peat, quickly giving way to a caramel sweetness and a hint of sea salt. Excellent blend! Seaside fire comes to mind.
Good stuff. Nice and smoky/peaty, but less medicinal taste than Laphroaig 10. Between the 2, I think I like this better.
I’m a big fan of smoky/peaty whisky. Before tasting this, I was a bit concerned it would be overly smokey. While it is heavy on the smoke/peat, there’s a great flavor complexity underneath.
surprise of Advent Calendar so far--though usually neither a fan of overly smoky, overly peaty whisky, this one somehow just works, and the nutty, carmelly flavor sits just below the smokiness with a bit of salinity. Liked it much more than expected--perfect for a raw March day near the sea
Gross. All smoke
Flaviar Advent sampler # 14. I really like this one! Very much like an Islay Scotch. You can smell the caramel, taste the smoke and peat. I'd definitely buy a bottle of this. Added to my wishlist.
Definite smoke/peat on the nose but there is also a savory component almost like bacon. The flavor is smooth I'd like a bit more variety than just the peaty/earthiness. A little water opens this up nicely.
Advent 2020 #14 - we aren't Scotch fans but this is excellent! The smoke/peat is there but subdued when the sweet backend hits. The smoke lingers on the taste buds in a nice way.
My wife loves smokey and she is very happy with this one!! Got it for her.
Smells lke a 1950 hospital's OR. Horrible taste.
Pretty solid blend for the price if you like Islay scotch. I prefer Compass Box Peat Monster or some of the blends from Wemyss, but they are a bit more expensive.
This was quite a surprise. Definitely Big Islay that opens the over with a sixer and then simmers down to a long boundary. Perfect after running mutton curry or similar zesty fare and best with a robusto and a splash of H2O to open up the concoction post dinner and by a fireside. Looking forward to enjoying more of it this winter.
The only blended for an Islay lover! It's exactly what you think it would be in that it hits hard with the smoke and peat...yet it's surprisingly refined on the palate with balancing sweetness and vanilla. This could easily become a go to dram for me.