About this blog:

This blog will feature tasting notes, reviews, distillery visits and whisky news with focus mainly on Scottish single malts. This will sometimes be accompanied by politically incorrect (whisky) opinions. You have now been warned! :-)
The views expressed here are entirely my own, unless otherwise stated.

Tuesday, 17 September 2013


Moving from 3 blended malts - Taketsuru - on to another product from the gentlemen at Nikka Whisky. Again, as with the Taketsurus, we're dealing with whisky from Yoichi and Miyagikyo distilleries, but this time grain whisky has also been added.

As to the origins of the grain whisky, it most likely coming from Miyagikyo distillery as well, since some of their production equipment is also configured to make grain whisky. This is, though, just my qualified guess... Why, you ask? Well, it's most likely not bought from other Japanese distillers, since its not a part of Japanese culture/tradition to do business with their competitors... therefore, I'm guess it's either Miyagikyo grain or grain whisky bought in from i.e. Scotland.

Another trait of this blend is that its gone through a period of 'marrying', which means its not just blended and then bottled - 'Marrying' means it has been recasked for a period of time to allow for the malt and grain whisky to interact with each other, providing a more harmonious product.

Oh, and then its bottle at a very nice 51,4% alcohol - big thumbs up for that!!

Now the big question is... is it really more harmonious?

'From the Barrel' blended whisky, 51,4%, batch 02B62A, 50cl bottle, Nikka

Colour is light mahogany

Hints of ale and peat, vanilla, light oak/sawdust, some fruit, tobacco, moss and mere hints of burning incense

Dark fruits sherry style, spices - cloves and nutmeg, good malty edge suggesting a high malt content. Mulled fruit, mild honey and some vegetative notes and a clear burst of peat. The grain in this is not really showing and I'm betting this whisky could easily fool a lot of people into believing its a malt.

Also the 51,4% alcohol does quite a lot for this whisky, making sure its delivery is powerful enough to impress from the first sip, yet it also manages to be not be overpowering in its delivery of the underlying notes.... and the reason for that is probably because of mellow grain whisky influence. This is high quality stuff!! and at a decent price too...

Please note that it only comes in a 50cl bottle and that this whisky comes in marked batches...
The batch number is located in the lower right corner of the front label on the bottle.


Note 05.10.2013: After the bottle have been open for about 1 month now, more grain notes are starting to come through, making the whole experience quite sweet and less complex, the peated notes are gone too. This is making me drop my score from 87 to 83... but still good whisky, no doubt about that!


  1. Hihi, you will come to notice that all whisky from nikka and also yamazak has batch numbers. Even the really cheap blends in 4.5 liter plastic bottles.

  2. Hi Niels, Thanks for commenting

    I'm aware of batch numbers on many japanese bottlings.

    The reason I emphasised it here is if anyone looks up this batch and start to compare notes/scores