Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Whisky Shop W. Hakushu Distillery WSO-003 48% abv

Nose: Not your typical Hakushu, which makes everything that bit more interesting. Sure, it has the typical house-style aromas bamboo, and whiffs of forestry.  However, it is the cask that influences this little number – creating a whole new game. Pink marshmallows, strawberry jam, and grated coconut on a malt biscuit. Dried figs dipped in white chocolate. Cinnamon. Sour grapefruit gummies.

Taste: Winter berry spice, Cherry Ripe (grated fruit cherries and coconut, chocolate). Cranberry sauce, oloroso sherry elements, pepper, bamboo, and greenery.

Finish: Moderate and prickly with pepper, cinnamon, and sour grapefruit gummies.

Comment: Red wine barrel maturation or finish? The WSO-003 had an outurn of 1500 bottles.

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Whisky Shop W. Single Grain Chita Distillery WSO-004 48% abv

Nose: Clean and subtle. Elegant sweetness consisting of puff wheat cereal with warm milk and a sprinkle of brown sugar. Honey lemon slices, vanilla, and white chocolate. As expected there’s a lovely floral graininess. From here a mixture of assorted sweet savoury aromas - creamed corn, mashed pumpkin and sweet potato, and a distinctive but low key sourwood waft. Shea butter? Adding a few drops of water creates herbal notes and mandarin. 

Taste: Velvety, refined, and mouth-watering. Melons, mild pepper and light oak. Sweet potato butter spread. Whole grain honey puffs cereal. Popcorn. Some mild creamy nuttiness – almond butter. Then, it tends to become variable with dryness. Sour -  light fruity tartness. Sweet vinegar. With time the nose reminds me of Irish Poitin - sugar beet distilled spirits. Wood sap. It's quite neutral with water in my opinion.

Finish: Moderate to long lingering. Refreshing bitter-sweet element. Grassy and dry. Sugar beet. Light oak and pepper. Baked grapefruit peel. 

Comment: I’m a sucker for single grain whiskies, especially on the home front, and like most domestic grain whiskies this one ticks all the right boxes.