Glenmorangie A Tale of Tokyo Limited Edition Single Malt Scotch Whisky (700ml)
  • Nick's Import
  • Limit One per customer
  • Not gift boxed

Glenmorangie A Tale of Tokyo Limited Edition Single Malt Scotch Whisky (700ml)

Highlands, SCOTLAND
$179. 99
$2159.88 Dozen
ABV: 46%

"one of the best whiskies of the year..." -

"dazzling Glenmorangie, I'll buy a bottle or three." -

There's been a slow but steady outturn of whiskies matured in the quasi mythical mizunara oak, and not only from Japan. Now Glenmorangie add another to the list. 'A Tale of Tokyo' could just as well be called ‘A Tale of Mizunara’, given the long winded journey that transpired when 'Morangie's Head of Whisky Creation, Bill Lumsden decided to pursue it. He sums up mizunara as, “Quite weird, difficult to obtain and a challenge to work with" while conceding, “it has this kind of cult status, which is quite intriguing because if you look at in the cold light of day you would never use it for making oak barrels.”

It would seem that the project was lucky to get off the ground. Mizunara oak trees grow particularly slowly. It takes 200 years for them to be suitable for crafting into casks (American oak takes around half that time). The wood itself imparts strange flavours and is notoriously porous (not ideal for holding whisky!) and, on top of that, the oak is generally difficult to procure. After many years searching, Lumsden finally found a cooperage that would cooperate. “The owner knew Glenmorangie and he knew about the experimental things we’d done and so he agreed to craft some barrels for me,” says Lumsden. Together with Master Blender & Head of Whisky Creation, Gillian Macdonald, they decided to heavily toast the mizunara. Filled with Glenmorangie spirit, the two barrels yielded "weird flavours" including furniture polish notes. The experiment was a failure. However, Lumsden adds “We played around in the lab for a year or so and eventually ended up with the recipe we are most happy with. The biggest flavor contributor is the mizunara, but the flavor profile is classic Glenmorangie, with first-fill American oak bourbon barrels to lend creaminess and softness and take the edge off the mizunara and a bit of sweetness from Glenmorangie finished in oloroso sherry casks. The result is a dram as full of delicious sensory contrasts as a trip to Tokyo”. Officially launched in the UK in late 2023, the packaging for the new limited edition was brought to life by Japanese artist, Yamaguchi Akira, known for his bird’s-eye view designs. Dr. Bill is reportedly hidden multiple times in the artwork. 46% Alc./Vol.

Other reviews... This is classic Glenmorangie, filtered through a different lens to just the right degree to create something that is both familiar and also new and exciting. The nose sets up the “tale” pretty cleanly: brightly sweet with vanilla and caramel dominant, but soon revealing layers of orange peel, tea leaf, some white pepper, and an umami richness that evokes soy-sauced mushrooms. Excellent balance, with a jasmine note coming forward after some time in glass. Chewy and fruity on the palate, here a mix of sweet clementines and almond nougat spar playfully on what quickly emerges as a light and lively experience. While the attack is gentle and accommodating, the whisky soon reveals more depth, bubbling up some flavors that are a little hard to pin down. Oaky, nutty, and increasingly savory, the whisky builds to a finish that offers notes of polished wood and more pepper, though the dessert-like sweetness is never far away. I’m not sure this evokes Tokyo exactly — to me, Tokyo will always taste like ramen and robots — but I’m not hung up on it. It’s one of the best whiskies of the year — and, I hope, one you’ll be able to find at a reasonable price. -

...Indeed it doesn't belong here, ha-ha. As I said, just a little 'Japanese' joke. This is a marriage (lovely term) of whiskies aged in mizunara (for a finishing I suppose), bourbon and sherry casks. Just a few years ago, we weren't thinking there would be so many of these 'rare' mizunara oaks that distillers are so fond of these days. Mind you, even Chivas Regal use them; Japan sells. Colour: straw. Nose: a fresh, citrusy Glenmorangie, with some chalk and clay, cider apples, lime and, perhaps, hints of fresh-sawn pinewood. Small quantities of liquorice allsorts and coconut balls. Mouth: very good, very juicy, very fruity, pretty much within its regional style. I know that's controversial but despite very different equipment, especially the stills, both neighbours Dalmore and Balblair are also producing this fresh and fruity style as long as no heavy sherry's involved. Juicy fruit, all-vitamin juice, melons and peaches, limoncello, orange brioche, small bananas, just a little spearmint too (is that the mizunara?)… Finish: not too long but clean and fruity. I would try to pour half a glass over some lemon sherbet, I'm sure that'll work. A little acacia honey in the aftertaste. Comments: dazzling Glenmorangie, I'll buy a bottle or three. Yes, despite the fact that it's NAS. Is it not? 88 points -

Double Gold - San Francisco World Spirits Competition 2023.