This Friday we’ll be unveiling an exciting new dekanta release and it’s one we really can’t wait to share with you. Until then, we’ll be rolling on our countdown by looking at another of our favourite Japanese whiskies of all time.
Yesterday, we sipped on the Nikka Coffey Malt – a superb and innovative world blended expression created on the unique Coffey still – and if you missed that you can catch up by clicking here.
Today, we’re raising the bar with a well-aged single malt from one of the best distilleries in all of Japan. This one has a character unlike anything else on the market and displays one of the cleanest drinking experiences I’ve ever witnessed in a whisky of this age – it’s the Hakushu 18 Year Old.
The Forest Distillery
Hakushu was Suntory’s second malt whisky distillery, after Yamazaki, and it was built in a rather unique location, sat 2000 feet above sea level, high in the mountains, which are green and teeming with rivers and wildlife.
It’s a stunning location for a distillery, but it wasn’t chosen for the aesthetic appeal, rather it was chosen because Suntory wanted to produce a unique, crisp brand of single malt whisky that drew heavily on its gorgeous surroundings.
The water here is some of the best in all of Japan, and there is an abundance of it flowing down the mountainside.
It really does make an incredible visit, but what’s also outstanding is the whisky they’re making inside.
It’s single malt with a unique, refreshing, fruity and lightly floral character and these qualities can be found right through the range, from the Distiller’s Reserve to the world-beating 25 Year Old. But it is the 18 Year Old we want to talk about today – a whisky so accomplished you just can’t help but take several drams to fully explore it.
Hakushu 18 Year Old
It was expertly created by Suntory’s Master Distillers from a selection of spirits that spent at least 18 years in the cask. Today, it’s a favourite among many Japanese whisky lovers and one that you should certainly try if you have not had the chance already.
It’s crisp on the nose with oranges, juicy pear, freshly cut grass and a dry smokiness all making themselves known. Then the palate brings toffee apples, lemon zest and lavender honey, that dance on the tongue in tandem, before the finish arrives with more juicy fruits and the return of that subtle smokiness which lingers for some time.
These tasting notes are all fantastic to enjoy, but they are so fantastic because of the way in which they are delivered. The smoothness and the cleanness of the mouthfeel are wondrous and this allows the aromas and flavours to be fully showcased.
This is a whisky that those at Suntory should be proud of. It stands out on it’s own in world whisky in terms of its character and really embodies the breathtaking surroundings at the Hakushu Distillery.
Back Again Tomorrow
Join us again tomorrow when we’ll be looking at a fantastic whisky from a company setup by a Japanese whisky legend.