White Oak Akashi Single Malt Uozumi Sherry & Bourbon Casks NAS 46%abv

P1050305Nose: Oloroso sherry, honey, charred oak, pepper, nutmeg, paprika, maple syrup, dried apricot and dried mango. A floral not that becomes stronger though not intrusive when water is added.
Palate: Some big wood spices, Oloroso sherry, orange, nutmeg, cocoa. Water adds some chili heat, roasted nuts and dried mango.
Finish: Chewy mints, honey, pepper, dried fruit and palate drying wood.
Last Word: Solid mix of sherry and bourbon cask whisky that can often be hit and miss in my experience and I’m a fan of spicy whiskies.

Rating: 85/100

Akashi White Oak Ariake Virgin Cask 5YO Oloroso Cask Finish 50%abv

BAL_3887.jpgNose: Dark cherries, cracked pepper, Christmas cake, marmalade, creamed corn, black currents, balsamic, some burnt twigs.
Palate: A richness that belies it’s young age. Pretty much follows the nose but adds ginger bread, sweetened tea, nutmeg, cocoa, creamed sherry and tangy orange.
Finish: Creamed sherry, peppermint, sweetened tea, tobacco, raisins and the tangy orange.
Last Word: Nicely balanced whisky with a maturity to the package beyond it’s age and the Oloroso cask finish adds richness and fullness. I’ve given this whisky to a few people to try and they have all enjoyed it.

Rating: 86/100

*Note: Although I have not been able to confirm 100% the origin of the Ariake Virgin Casks used for this whisky, you can read about the Ariake Cooperage here at Whiskies R Us

White Oak Akashi Aged 15 Years 58%abv

White Oak 15YO 58%Nose: Cherry cough mixture, eucalyptus bonfire, plums, brandy snaps. damp moss/earth, Blackcurrent Jols, burnt brown sugar, burnt rubber, lemon glaze.
Palate: Massive alcohol and hot spice hit without water. Sump oil, eucalyptus fire, cherry cough mixture, cherry brandy, cocoa, burnt rubber. Not for the feint hearted. Water adds some palate smacking tanginess a lots or heat to the back palate.
Finish: Long of kirsch, lemon glaze, eucalyptus fire, cocoa, all the previous cherry flavors, the burnt rubber and ginger bread.
Last Word: A wild ride!

Rating: 84/100
*Matured for 12.5 years in Spanish Oak Sherry casks and 2.5 years in Japanese Konara Oak casks.

New Release – White Oak(Akashi) 15 Year Old 58%abv

akashi-15yo

konara-oak-tree

Japanese Konara Oak Tree

The little White Oak Distillery has released it’s oldest expression yet. A 15 year old single malt that spent 12.5 years in Spanish Oak Sherry Casks then 2.5 years in Japanese Konara(Quercus Serrata) Oak Casks. Of course you are all familiar with Konara Oak aren’t you? Yeh thought not, me either. This is the first time that I know of, that this type of Japanese Oak Cask has been used to mature whisky. That fact alone makes this particular bottling a fascinating proposition.
Priced at Y10500 for a 500ml bottled and with an outrun of 795 bottles. I’m also glad to see that White Oak is sticking to it’s guns with their single cask releases and botting this one Non Chilled Filtered and No Artificial Coloring.
There seems to be a very small allocation for each of the retailers in Japan that stock this whisky, so if you see it and your keen on a bottle, they who hesitate most likely will miss out.

White Oak Distillery SM Aged 5 Years. 45%abv

japanese-whisky-097

Nose: The colour is honey and the nose follows suit. Is this only 5 years old? No roughness at all! Also soft oak, tinned apricots, pear, treacle and fresh dough. Smooth and balanced.
Palate: Honey and treacle on crumpets, soft oak, pear, dough, nutmeg and ginger.
Finish: Nicely spicy, yet also creamy, with good length. Some mineral-like qualities and lingering………lingering smoke. Where did that come from?
General Comment: Really fantastic for the age.
Rating: 82/100

Akashi 12-year-old. 50%abv

white-oak-sm-12yo-50Nose: Strong notes of vanilla, sherry, euchalyptus fire, burnt pie crust, overipe peach, burnt popcorn. A little sulphur, which works with this one.
Palate: Very strong flavours, even with a little water. The burnt popcorn is huge. Chargrilled steak, sherry, euchalyptus fire, malt, flambéed bananas.
Finish: Long, with malt, sherry, flambéed banana and then lots of ashy dryness from the various charred flavours on the palate.
Last Word: An eclectic whisky to say the least. Unfortunately some of the sulphury notes have begun to dominate over the last 12 months

Rating: 82/100

Akashi(White Oak) 14-year-old. 58% abv

akashi-white-oak-14yo-58

Matured in a Spanish Oak Sherry Cask for 12 and a half years. Finished with a white wine cask from the Yamanashi Winery belonging to the Eigashima Shuzou for one and a half years.
Nose: An odd (and strong) mix of coal fire, campfire ash, antiseptic cream, burnt rubber, mushrooms, potato skins, twigs, heavy dry sherry, cherry chocolate and caramel.
Palate: Heavy sherry, burnt rubber, mixed peel, campfire ash, cherry chocolate, brandy, menthol, grapes (red not white) and a good bit of ginger. With water, some bitter orange, twigs and honey soy.
Finish: Medium on dry sherry, campfire ash, mushrooms, twigs, cherry chocolate, brandy and burnt rubber.

Last Word: Well done to Eigashima for bottling this one non-chill-filtered and uncolored.

Rating: 80/100
*An alternate impression from Whiskies R Us