Hakushu Distiller’s Reserve

By Adam Monday 8th Sep, 2014

Entry by @neil_bro

We like to presume that the majority of us Dapper Chappers are well versed in the world of Whisky. It seems a natural presumption to make that a Dapper Chapper would enjoy sitting in front of a roaring fireplace, in suede slippers and silk dressing gown with a glass of single malt in hand.

So if you class yourself as one of the above, and haven’t yet come across the explosion of Japanese whiskies that are entering the market, then hang your head in shame. As good as scotch might be, it’s time to broaden your horizons.

In recent years, Japanese whisky has exploded with the complex flavors, colorful liquids and incredible tasting tipples on offer, grabbing the attention of even the most hard to please whisky aficionado.

Hakushu Distiller’s reserve is one of the newest creations from the famous  Suntory distillers. For those who are not familiar with Suntory, they own two of the most famous malt distilleries in Japan – The Yamazaki Distillery and Hakushu Distillery. Yamakazi (which we’ll be posting about in the next few weeks) is Japan’s first and old distillery, having opened in 1923. Exactly 50 years later, their second distillery Hakushu was opened in the Southern areas of the Japanese Alps.

Hakushu 2

From Suntory’s mountain distillery, nestled deep in the forests of Mt. Kaikomagatake, Hakushu comes this herbal and gently smoky single malt.

Hakushu Distiller’s Reserve is a blend of lightly peated malt, heavily peated malt, and whisky matured in American oak for around 18 years – although they don’t put an age on the bottle as this allows them more freedom to get the flavor absolutely spot on, rather than automatically bottle everything at 18 years….far more thought than that goes into this whisky.

If you are yet to taste a Japanese whisky, this is a great place to start. It really is unlike the majority of whiskies we have tasted in our time, and trust me, having grown up in Scotland, there have been many.

What strikes you most when you first take a sip is that overwhelming taste of greens – you get herbs, cucumber, a hint of mint and a strong hint of Grapefruit, all finished off with a subtle smoke flavor, coming from the American Oak that part of this whisky is aged in. But then, this much should have been obvious given the unique subtle green/yellow color of the whisky itself.

Hakushu 3

This really is one of the most easy to drink whiskies we have tried to date. We could happily sit and drink this,neat all day long. While it is definitely very tasty when mixed with soda water, for once we’re not going to recommend a cocktail recipe for you to try this one in.

Just sip it neat and enjoy the refreshing and uplifting taste and aroma. You can thank us later.

Hakushu Distiller’s Reserve is available for £39.99 from The Whisky Exchange