Category: Reviews

Review: Hitachino Whisky, 2019 edition

Review: Hitachino Whisky, 2019 edition

As I write this, I’m sitting at Hitachino Brewing Shinagawa. A couple weeks back, we covered a release that many followers of Japanese craft whisky have been waiting for: the first whisky product out of Kiuchi Shuzo’s Nukada Distillery. That product was a canned highball, […]

Review: THE ESSENCE of SUNTORY WHISKY YAMAZAKI DISTILLERY MONTILLA WINE CASK

Review: THE ESSENCE of SUNTORY WHISKY YAMAZAKI DISTILLERY MONTILLA WINE CASK

Tonight we get involved with bottle 2 of 3 in the second series of THE ESSENCE of SUNTORY WHISKY. This time around we have a Yamazaki aged for 9 years in an ex-Montilla wine cask, bottled in 2019 at 55% abv. Montilla Wine Let’s get […]

Review: THE ESSENCE of SUNTORY WHISKY YAMAZAKI DISTILLERY REFILL SHERRY CASK

Review: THE ESSENCE of SUNTORY WHISKY YAMAZAKI DISTILLERY REFILL SHERRY CASK

The other day I happened to come across the second volume of the “THE ESSENCE of SUNTORY WHISKY” series being sold on Amazon JP at retail price. It’s quite odd since they are not supposed to be sold to members of the general public — […]

Chichibu, 2010-2018, Cream Sherry Hogshead Cask 2633, 48/285, 59.6% abv.

Chichibu, 2010-2018, Cream Sherry Hogshead Cask 2633, 48/285, 59.6% abv.

Chichibu has consistently released a limited and experimental bottle for the famous Chichibu whisk(e)y festival. The 2018 release was matured in a cream sherry hogshead for over 7 years, but what is “cream sherry”? Supposedly cream sherry is a blend of two types/groups of sherry: […]

Mars Komagatake Heavily Peated, 2014-2017, Cask No. 1855, 502/578, 59.8% abv.

Mars Komagatake Heavily Peated, 2014-2017, Cask No. 1855, 502/578, 59.8% abv.

American white oak Asian exclusive, released November 2, 2017. Nothing much on English based boards and too lazy to check the Asian boards, but it seemed to get rave reviews by some IG and FB characters. Nose: initially a moderate level of peat and wood […]

Review: Akkeshi New Born Foundations 3

Review: Akkeshi New Born Foundations 3

Akkeshi New Born Foundations 3 is one of this quarter’s most highly anticipated Japanese whiskies. Many in the community are viewing Akkeshi’s dedication to sticking with the Islay Scotch style and methods as one of the few rays of light within the doom and gloom […]

Review: The Matsui Single Malt Japanese Whisky Sakura Cask

Review: The Matsui Single Malt Japanese Whisky Sakura Cask

Here it is. One of the first whiskies from the notorious Matsui Shuzo that is–allegedly–actual Japanese whisky! I wrote a whole lot of words about Matsui Shuzo’s phantom Kurayoshi Distillery last year. To briefly summarize: they have historically been pretty deceptive and confrontational, and tend […]

Review: The Cask of Yamazaki 1993, b. 2003, White Oak Hogshead No. 3P70284, Ohmi Aging Cellar Location 54-W-23-4, 12/216, 55% abv.

Review: The Cask of Yamazaki 1993, b. 2003, White Oak Hogshead No. 3P70284, Ohmi Aging Cellar Location 54-W-23-4, 12/216, 55% abv.

  Nose: honey and light sherry notes. Palate: light wood that becomes more strong with time, peat? Sharp, numbing. Not fruity. Not very enjoyable. Finish: short, spicy, sour. The “sharpness” of the flavors was like warm knives touching my tongue, a little numb, it’s ok. […]

Review: Wapirits Tumugi

Review: Wapirits Tumugi

Wapirits Tumugi claims to be Japan’s first spirit for cocktails. “The UK has gin, Russia has vodka, Cuba has rum, Mexico has tequila. And Nippon has Wapirits,” reads the potentially incendiary marketing copy. “But Whiskey Richard, you cover Japanese gin all the time,” you respond. […]

Review: Karuizawa 31, 1981, Shinanoya Private Cask 5th Anniversary, Bourbon Barrel Cask Number 4961, 228 bottles, 60.0% abv.

Review: Karuizawa 31, 1981, Shinanoya Private Cask 5th Anniversary, Bourbon Barrel Cask Number 4961, 228 bottles, 60.0% abv.

This is a commemorative bottling for the 5th anniversary of Shinanoya, a famous food and liquor shop/distributor in Japan. This is the sister label to Karuizawa 16 year cask 5006. The labels depict screen door painting “Lion and Tiger” by 18th century Japanese painter Soga […]