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Japanase whiskies #FT

By Miguel in Tasting , Yoichi , Yamazaki , Miyagikyo

Japanese whisky is something that makes you wonder why you didn’t discovered it before… they are damn good whiskies, they are all you want from a single malt and much as their Scotch cousins they are increasing their prices quite fast. Here we have a Yamazaki 18 years old, Hibiki 12 years old, Miyagikyo 10 years old, Yoichi 12 years old and Yamazaki 12 years old.

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Another post for the Fucking thief. Stealing other persons’ whisky so you can know about it. Is this your photo? Write me to fthief@awardrobeofwhisky.com and I will pay you… homage… and share with A Wardrobe of Whisky’s readers your experience on the tasting. Slainte!

Let’s review them, but let me do the tasting in a different order.

Hibiki 12 years old

I love this one. This is a tasting note that I do on a blind tasting…

“A great whisky - sherry and bourbon blended with exquisite taste. Maybe a Balvenie Doublewood?”

91
Suntory Hibiki 12 year
A stunning 12 year-old blend from Hibiki. Lovely malt from Hakushu and Yamazaki, plus some aged grain from Chita - and part matured in casks formerly home to Japanese plum liqueur! One of the best new releases of 2009, without a doubt. Picked up the top prize in its category at the World Whisky Awards 2010.

This dram has a gold-like color.

Nose (90): more than average. honey, vanilla, peaches, flowers, spices, citrus.

Palate (91): powerful, oily. honey, wood, vanilla, tobacco, plums, raisins, citrus, spices.

Finish (91): longer than average. honey, vanilla, tobacco.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Suntory Hibiki 12 year with 91 points over 100.

Buy this bottle at

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Miyagikyo 10 years old

Oops. It looks like I haven’t taste it yet but I have tasted 12 years old.

“Intense, with a good amount of salt and peat. Really maritime whisky.”

90
Nikka Miyagikyo 12 year
Full-bodied, fruity and complex, with some sherry character, hints of toffee and some polished malt. Deservedly popular. Matured in Sherry butts for extra depth and body.

This dram has a amber-like color.

Nose (91): strong. peaches, pineapple, spices, salt, wood, citrus.

Palate (91): oily, powerful. salt, peaches, peat, wood, citrus.

Finish (89): long. peat, honey, wood.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Nikka Miyagikyo 12 year with 90 points over 100.

Buy this bottle at

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Yoichi 12 years old

“This whisky grows in the glass. Just give it five minutes on the glass and enjoy it. The best whisky of the Yoichi range.”

91
Nikka Yoichi 12 year
The pot stills of the Yoichi distillery are still directly heated, proffering hot spots in the stills, which in turn gives the whisky some wonderful sweet, rich notes. This is one of the richest 12 year old drams I've ever had!

This japanese single malt whisky is perhaps the best whisky in the Yoichi range. If you enjoyed this one, give a try to Yoichi 10 years old

This dram has a cooper-like color.

Nose (92): strong. peaches, vanilla, honey, wood, citrus, a little peat, a little iodine, seaweed.

Palate (92): oily, powerful. peaches, wood, honey, spices, a little cloves, banana.

Finish (90): very long. honey, smoke, wood, vanilla.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Nikka Yoichi 12 year with 91 points over 100.

Buy this bottle at

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Yamazaki 12 years old

And now we turn into serious stuff…

“Awesome japanese whisky on the budget range. Really love how complex it is and its fruity character. There are not many Scotch whiskies so good at this price”

91
Suntory Yamazaki 12 year
'A pioneering malt in Japan, for which Suntory deserve great credit. In its early days, it was rounded and delicate...now it is more intense, confident and elegant. 8/10' Michael Jackson, Whisky Magazine, Oct 2002

This dram has a amber-like color.

Nose (91): strong. honey, floral, wood, fruity, pears, spices, cinnamon, vanilla. Simply amazing! It's hard to believe it is only 12 years old.

Palate (91): powerful, oily. honey, spices, vanilla, wood, cinnamon, cocoa, pepper.

Finish (90): longer than average. honey, floral, wood.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Suntory Yamazaki 12 year with 91 points over 100.

Yamazaki 18 years old

“Superb sherried stuff. Perfect cask with a delightful note of sulphur, and no, I am not drunk! I love this whisky!”

91
Suntory Yamazaki 18 year
A wonderful example of what Japanese whisky is capable of. We absolutely love this. Extremely smooth, with great complexity and a lovely balance of fruit, silky malt and a touch of smoke.

This dram has a cooper-like color.

Nose (91): more than average. nuts, honey, varnish, citrus, floral. Stunning nose! A legendary sherry monster!

Palate (91): powerful, oily. honey, nuts, a little sulphur, leather, citrus, wood, floral. In this whisky the sulphur note is even a positive thing. I like how it works there.

Finish (91): longer than average. honey, nuts, pepper.

So based on other whiskies I have already tasted I rate this Suntory Yamazaki 18 year with 91 points over 100.

Miguel says…

An awesome selection. Let me double you bet and I would change the Hibiki for the 21 years old and change the Miyagikyo for a Taketsuru 17 years old. That would be a real killer tasting. But definitively congrats to whomever organized this.

Remember, the fucking thief always welcome new challenges so send your photos to fthief@awardrobeofwhisky.com and I will taste your whisky. Thief’s word.



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