Released in Spring 2014, this is one of two Distiller’s Reserve single malt whiskies from Suntory in Japan. This single malt from the Yamazaki distillery is jam-packed with superb red berry notes, gained from the whisky being matured in Bordeaux wine casks and Sherry casks. It also features malt matured in Mizunara casks, adding subtle fragrant oak notes.
Colour: Brightly golden, hint of orange.
Nose: Sweet malt, fudge, some farm notes and the smell of pasta cooking (maybe I’d had pasta for dinner?! I don’t remember). Squashed red berries.
Palate: Sweet and smooth, balanced with the tiniest pinch of spice more towards the end. Medium thickness. Some fairly fresh berries and a wine influence, very light oak.
Finish: Fairly long, fresh grassy malt and summer sweetness.
Water: Not needed. Reduces mouthfeel but heightens the malt notes.
Thoughts: A really easily accessible malt, and to a Scotch drinker it’s definitely a great and recognisable start into Japanese whiskies, they are very similar in style. The wine you find on the nose is less apparent on the palate. Good quality malt well made, and very well priced, look out for it! A solid 87+.
Want to read my review on Hakushu Distiller’s Reserve? Click here!
Thanks to Suntory for the sample.