Israeli importer Classic-Whisky (keep in mind their tasty Caol Ila 2006) launched two non-public cask bottlings from Shizuoka. Each spirits had been distilled on the identical day in December 2019 and stuffed into ex-bourbon casks. One launch is from the Karuizawa nonetheless (Ok sort), the opposite from the direct wooden fireplace wash nonetheless (W sort). A pleasant head-to-head from this younger Japanese distillery.
Shizuoka Ok – 3 yo 2019 (52,7%, OB for Classic-Whisky 2023, ex-bourbon cask #497, 44 btl.)
Nostril: we’re greeted by lemons and bitter almonds, resulting in sweeter citrus (mandarin) and a fatty component (wax candles, evenly scented). Then stunning varnish and hints of sourdough. White cedar oil. Good one.
Mouth: fairly punchy, revolving round bittersweet freshness, reminding me of a gin & tonic with slices of grapefruit. Juniper berries, white pepper, lemon peels. Some oily notes once more. Then delicate grainy sweetness within the background, with hints of melon, vanilla and a few solventy notes.
End: medium size, candy and spicy, with good fruits (banana maybe) coming ahead.
Typical Ok nonetheless: actually balanced, with quite distinctive touches of botanicals and a pleasant fatty facet. Not all single casks are glorious for my part, however this can be a big choice. Solely accessible from Classic-Whisky.com.
Shizuoka W – 3 yo 2019 (53,5%, OB for Classic-Whisky 2023, ex-bourbon cask #494, 44 btl.)
Nostril: richer and far more muscular, with a warming (virtually ashy) notice. Much less polished, as a substitute extra greasy. Faint hints of fermenting fruits and whiff of rum, in addition to extra oaky notes (together with vanilla and floral touches) shining via. Vegetal oils. A really mild acetic whiff too.
Mouth: sweeter and spicier than the Ok. The sensation of gin botanicals actually stands out, with an even bigger maltiness, caraway seeds and oranges within the background. Extra creamy vanilla. Later some leathery notes and a suggestion of peat seem.
End: fairly lengthy, nonetheless spicy and oakier, with a barely extra spirity edge than within the Ok model.
Basically I don’t have a transparent desire in the direction of Ok or W, it actually depends upon the bottling. The W model is all the time extra full-bodied and infrequently extra complicated, however on this case it appears hotter and fewer balanced than the Ok nonetheless. Total a really good whisky although, particularly taking the age in consideration. Solely accessible from Classic-Whisky.com. Rating: 85/100