- Nick's Import
Nikka From the Barrel 51.4% Blended Japanese Whisky (500ml)
One of the most impressive (and affordable) Japanese whiskies to have ever hit the Australian market. "I have been drinking this for a very long time - and still can't remember a bottle that's ever let me down." - Jim Murray.
Today, most of the malt whisky produced in Japan is for blending but Japanese distillers generally don't trade casks in the manner that Scottish distillers do. Consequently, it's up to each distillery to produce a diversity of styles that will form the base components of 'house blends' that offer unique and complex flavour profiles.
Nikka Straight from the barrel is no exception. Composed of blended single malts from both the Miyagikyo and Yoichi distilleries along with an element of grain whisky that's all matured in first-fill bourbon casks. Good reviews are not hard to come by, with web based whisky enthusiasts describing this as an excellent value Japanese blend and all round great introduction to the Nikka style. Jim Murray's also a fan, stating "I have been drinking this for a very long time - and still can't remember a bottle that's ever let me down." Limited to 6 bottles per customer.
Tasting note: [Batch 24J12B] Deep gold / bright copper appearance. The aroma is pristinely clean and reminiscent of some class sherry bottlings, there's suggestions of biscuity malt, vanilla and juicy dried fruits. At the same time it frustrates - even after extended time in the glass it’s shy to reveal better definition. In the mouth, soft, gentle spices unfold a blanket of sweet, nutty, chewy malt and dried fruit flavours. A hint of smoke in here too? Clean, slightly tingly mouth feel as the spices increase, but overall this shows good balance at +50%. Finishes as it began - with the spices more settled and drying as the delicate malt lingers through the aftertaste. 51.4% Alc./Vol.
Previous tastings... [Batch 04J080] Deep, bright gold appearance. Aromas include toasty cereals, straw, cocoa, pear and spices beautifully intertwined. A huge, spicy entry is semi sweet with stewed pear, dried apricot and a chewy texture. Very well balanced at cask strength. Drying pear, spice and vanilla aftertaste. In all a little bit like a rye heavy Bourbon. Certainly one of the most impressive and affordable Japanese whiskies to arrive on the Australian market. 51.4% 94 points
Other Reviews...A high-strength blend that takes no prisoners. The color is full gold and the first thing that hits the nose is a complex mix of restrained smoke (sandalwood, cigar), fennel, and celery before semi-dried tropical fruits and orange peel take over. The palate also shows some of that mango character, but also crisp oak and a burst of sweet powdered spices on the finish. A malt lover’s blend. 92 points - David Broom - Malt Advocate