The past two weeks have been very challenging. Challenging in the sense that I had to refrain from the pleasures of whisky due to bad sinuses. Challenging, perhaps a better word would be dedication. Although tempting, I refrained from sipping nectar throughout the cold days that are still present in Japan, as I knew my nose wasn’t functioning well and nosing a whisky would have been a complete waste. I have been keeping this little number under my belt for a while and didn’t give into the desire to indulge, until now.
Ichiro’s Malt – Card SeriesExpression: eight of clubs
Age: 23-year- old
First cask: hogshead
Second cask: American oak puncheon
Bottle number: 143/561ABV: 57.5%
Nose: Such a peculiar assortment: baked turnips, balsamic vinegar, feta cheese, red licorice, plywood, banana chips, red skin lollies, and a faint merlot aroma. Vegetal: baby leaf and rocket leave. After 5 minutes an earthy smell breaks through.Taste: An initial explosion of spice upfront. Excessively peppered cauliflower, heavily char grilled green capsicum skins, red licorice, and balsamic vinegar. A fresh, non-lit cigar mouthfeel. The addition of water enhances the spice further and creates a sensation of a baked turnip coated in salt and pepper.
Finish: Short-medium, big bang of white pepper witch switches between the combinations of red licorice and again balsamic vinegar. What’s that pleasant finale after moderate length: mouthfeel of a Montecristo?
Comment: Initially I didn’t think too much of this whisky. I originally considered it to be a Joker (pun intended) out of the card series. I certainly couldn’t justify its price tag of approximately 19,000 yen (depending on where sold) and I still do have doubts. That is only my opinion. However, it has become to grow on me, chameleon like qualities: ability to change in aroma and taste. I’m actually looking forward to my next dram.
Reviewed by Clint A