Thursday, February 19, 2015

White Oak 14yo Wine Cask Finish

A fourteen year old White Oak Akashi whisky, finished in wine a white wine cask. Bottled at cask strength of 56% vol in 400 500ml bottles.






  • Nose: Smokey, almost sherry cask matured like, a little bit peat mixed with a heavy red wine like a Rioja, leather, tobacco,  with time a bit wine acidity comes forth, water makes it dryer
  • Mouth: Oily, buttery, some some and some red fruits, chocolate
  • Finish: Smokey, tropical fruits, English wine gummy, oak, water brings out some dried oriental spices and chocolate which keeps lingering
Comment: This works really well and there are lots of tastes and flavors to discover. Water changes the character quite a bit as well. It isn't 100% harmonic with the wine finish I'd say but maybe 90%... 

88 points

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Shinshu Mars Komagatake 10yo Wine Cask Finish

A ten year old wine cask finished malt bottled at 40% vol from the Shinshu Mars distillery. Limited to 500 bottles. Some pretty good info about the distillery can be found on the Whisky Mizuwari Blog.







  • Nose: Cedar wood, red wine acidity, the malt hides a bit in the background, a little bit honey and some red berries
  • Mouth: Oily, a little bit acidity, woods
  • Finish: Smokey, oily, red berries, medium long
Comment: I feel the red wine finish overpowers the malt on the nose and mouth. I don't have too much experience with wine finish, but this one only works okay'ish in my opinion and maybe the malt would haven even been better off without the finish.

81 points

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Nikka Pure Malt Black

Nikka claims the Pure Malt Black has a high Yoichi content and a blod taste. Reasonably priced in 0.5l bottles with 43% vol. I already tasted the Red and White versions so let's see how this fares.



  • Nose: Fruity -  papaya!, some malt, smoke, black tea, a little bit peat
  • Mouth: Oily, butterscotch, generally a tad watery/weak
  • Finish: Malt, pepper, some fruit, medium long with lingering smoke 
Comment: A great nose but mouth and finish can't keep up. Still probably my favorite of the three. The smokiness combined with the fruit is very nice.

81 points
(~2015)

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Nikka 2000 Coffey Grain Cask# 231298

Another Nikka Coffey Grain whisky. This time a 11 year old single cask aged for 11 years. Bottled at 63% cask strength and as of writing this still available in some stores.





  • Nose: Oak, dry, water soaked grains, slight sweetness
  • Mouth: Oak, raisins, with water a (quality) vodka note comes forth
  • Finish: oak, sweet, some raisins again, with water slightly alcoholic again
Comment: Not overly complex but a grain whisky which despite its for a grain whisky young age is quite tasty. I enjoy it more without water despite its high strength.

83 points

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Togouchi NAS

The Togouchi isn't a strictly Japanese whisky. From my understanding Chugoku-Jozo imports Scottish malt and Canadian grain and blends and ages them in Japan. Anyways let's try this 40% vol. no ages statement blend.






  • Nose: Slightly biting, mandarin oranges, vanilla, cinnamon, relatively young and light
  • Mouth: Mild, molasses, young grain, light bodied
  • Finish: Molasses, hints of oak and cedar wood, oranges with clove, medium long
Comment: This is fairly pleasing with some complexity shimmering trough the overall light bodied whisky.

78 points
(2014)

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Nikka Coffey Malt

Nikka Coffey Malt - tasted this one together with the Nikka Coffey Grain. Distilled in the Miyagikyo distillery. 0.7l bottle with 45% vol and no age statement.





  • Nose: Glue, malty, sweet acorn, candied apple, hints of smoke
  • Mouth: Oily, creamy, light malt
  • Finish: A bit alcohol, light caramel and malt, glue again, a little bit of Miyagikyo profile in the very end.
Comment: Definitely not the usual Miyagikyo profile. It needs some time to breath for the nose to open up. Like the Coffey Grain the mouth feel has a very unique creamy mouth feel. Overall the malt wasn't too exciting to me though. 

78 points
(2014)

Nikka Coffey Grain

To quote the Nikka website: Nikka operates two Coffey stills (named after its inventor Aeneas Coffey) within the Miyagikyo distillery for the elaboration of its grain whiskies. Imported from Scotland in 1963, these old stills yield a distillate with more flavour and depth than modern column stills, imparting a distinct character that defines the house blends. These two unique bottlings showcase the innovative spirit of Nikka.

Bottled in 0,7l bottles at 45% vol. with no age statement. Tasted this together with the Nikka Coffey Malt.
  • Nose: Some biting alcohol, light bodied, a little bit raisins, sharp
  • Mouth: Creamy or milky..., very grainy taste, light sugar water
  • Finish: Alcohol, grain, vodka, light oak influences, short
Comment: I did not enjoy this very much, a strong alcohol flavor more in the vein of new-make. Nikka has much better offerings in that price-range.

73 points
(2014)