There is no question that Japan, and specifically Suntory, has produced some exquisite whiskies over the years. Yamazaki holds a core place in Japanese whiskies rise in global prominence.
In recent years the Yamazaki 2016 Sherry has auctioned for as much as EUR 1,950! To then think of what a 25 year old can attract? This particular whisky is an official bottling and my whisky companions and I shared a small sample in April 2018.
Yamazaki 25 year Sherry Cask 43%
- Colour – Incredibly dark – almost unbelievable
- Nose – Varnish, old wood, dark fruits, stewed plums, cloves, cinnamon, star anise, Christmas cake, enriched spices of nutmeg, butter cream, coriander
- Palate – Very sweet, spices, very dry, more of the star anise, some dark juicy fruits or berries, a little cocoa
- Finish – Long, solid with some bitter tannins
- Water – One would ordinarily think at 43% the addition of water would be a crime. In this case, with such a concentrated flavours, it helped to open up the whisky in the most marvellous way
Overall it was a brilliant whisky – rich, complex, intense. And one well worth sampling if you happen to be so fortunate to come across it.
I will admit that most Yamazaki’s I’ve enjoyed were long before I started to record tasting notes and most certainly before prices rose astronomically. However here are two Yamazaki‘s that stand out which I had the pleasure of sampling in the last few years:
- Yamazaki Sherry Cask (1998) 61%
- Yamazaki 12 year (1996/2009) 60% (Whisky Live Japan 10 year anniversary edition)
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