Google The 20th Anniversary Sessions, today two new cats from Japan

Serge whiskyfun
Thousands of tastings,
all the music,
all the rambligs
and all the fun


Facebook Twitter Logo
Guaranteed ad-free
copyright 2002-2022


Hi, this is one of our (almost) daily tastings. Santé!

July 30, 2022






Angus's Corner
From our correspondent and
skilled taster Angus MacRaild in Scotland
The 20th Anniversary Sessions, today two new cats from Japan


A very quick wee tasting, but one that perhaps underscores some of the things I wrote in my mini-essay for our 20th Anniversary post the other day. Namely about whisky being more global, increasingly better at younger ages these days and often made by very talented, independent people.






Shizuoka 3 yo 2017/2021 (50.4%, OB for Club Qing, cask #2017-119, 31 bottles)

Shizuoka 3 yo 2017/2021 (50.4%, OB for Club Qing, cask #2017-119, 31 bottles)
I'm late to the party but it seems everyone is already whispering about Shizuoka… Colour: gold. Nose: I'm not sure to what extent there's hot climate involved here, but it's mad to think this is only 3 years old. Hugely syrupy, concentrated and resinous with many impressions of fir woods, delicate embrocations, precious oils, sandalwood, coconut and this perfectly balanced and highly aromatic spiciness. 'Scented' is a word that springs to mind. It's also very immediately a whisky that is about distillate, not just good wood. With water: pine needles, fir resins, polished exotic hardwood, chai tea and various crystallised exotic fruits. Wonderfully aromatic and detailed. Mouth: jasmine flowers, putty, lime leaf, waxed sandalwood, mineral oils, camphor and various kinds of embrocation and vapour rubs. Strays into herbal liqueur territory with this sweet, herbaceous quality. With water: terrific development, becomes much fatter, wider and more oils, waxes, exotic spices, dried orange peel and camphor. Even a little earthy and showing wee notes of petrichor and salted almonds. Finish: good length, a little buttery, more camphor, more of these soft wood spice and pot pourri impressions. Comments: I had it at 89 but water tipped it over the 90 line. Just beautifully sculpted distillate. But only 31 bottles? Booo!
SGP: 562 - 90 points.



Chichibu 'London Edition 2021' (51.5%, OB, bourbon barrels, 1859 bottles)

Chichibu 'London Edition 2021' (51.5%, OB, bourbon barrels, 1859 bottles)
I know, Chichibu isn't exactly a new kid on the block anymore, in fact I'd say it has become a more established name by now. But it's still a name that always feels like good news to me. This one is a vatting of 7 barrels, all aged over 5 years, four of which previously held peated whisky - not sure whether that was peated Chichibu or something else. Colour: pale gold. Nose: the peat sings straight away here with sweet, crisp, gently salty peat smoke. Lots of linens, chalk, cereals, putty and touches of linseed oil and even some impressions of smoked artichoke in olive oil. Personality in abundance once again. With water: drier and smokier, a slightly floral accented smoke that also invokes bonfire embers, scrunched newspapers in a coal hearth and pine wood. Mouth: again this sweet and salty peaty smoke, in the mouth it's also creamy and rather fatty with a dairy aspect about it. Smoked olive oil, dried capers, a few drops of lemon juice and notes of bandages and iodine. Really quite impressively peaty. With water: more subtle now, there's sandalwood, hessian, dried citrus fruits and more impressions of camphor and smoked olive oil. Very rounded and mouth filling. Finish: long, gently smoky, still pretty peaty and with this lovely, bright salinity and citrus note in the aftertaste. Comments: another very smart composition, the peat influence has been very deftly integrated I would say. Great overall balance and particularly good texture in the mouth.
SGP: 465 - 90 points.




More tasting notesCheck the index of all Japanese whiskies we've tasted so far







Whiskyfun's Home