Karuizawa

17 Years Old

ABV 40%
REVIEWED Issue 26, Issue 56, Issue 64
Specifications
Brand: Karuizawa
Expression: 17 Years Old
Type: Japan Whisky / Single Malt
Age: 17 years old
ABV: 40%
Country/Region: Japan
Bottling type: Standard (Distillery or blended)
Visit the distillery
Karuizawa (Closed 2011) Distillery, Naganoken, Kitasakogun, Miyotamachi, Oaza Maseguchi, Japan
Taster   Martine Nouet
Nose: Biscuity. Citrussy. Orange marmalade. A touch of rancio. Earthy mushrooms. Damp cellar. A delicate complexity. Smoky wood.
Palate: Velvety, oily. Enveloping sweetness, releasing jammy flavours of orange and ginger marmalade and plum jam. Ginger biscuits.
Finish: Lingering, warm and rich. Refreshing note of liquorice in the back.
Comment: A superb balance and richness. Luscious bouquet, satisfying and flavoursome.
8.5
Taster   Dave Broom
Nose: Weighty with almost carbonised notes (roasted nut/burnt almond), cooking chocolate, leather, fruit cake, spice and some smoke (turf/moss).
Palate: Soft, ripe and fruity with that burnt edge. Malaga. Soft, rounded and slightly dry. Good balance.
Finish: Dry with a nodule of sweetness. Good length and power.
Comment: Well-made and best neat, when that rich spirit comes through.
8.0
Taster   Michael Jackson
Nose: Earthy. Riesling. Linseed oil.
Palate: Sweetish. Chocolatey. Sliced toasted almonds.
Finish: Warming. Soothing.
Comment: Pleasant as a 'dessert whisky', but lacks complexity.
7.8
Taster   Dave Broom
Nose: Huge and meaty: truffle/dried shiitake mushroom heading into balsamic/rancio territory. Becomes sooty with roast chestnut, burning leaves, graphite. Mature.
Palate: Strangely flat and lacking in energy. Everything is well ordered but lacks life. Bit flat spices palate is ordered but lack energy.
Finish: Mature, slightly earthy.
Comment: Sweet-ish, sour-ish, savoury-ish, dry-ish...it's just a bit...ish.
7.3
Taster   Martine Nouet
Nose: Discrete. Rather bland. A medicinal touch (tar cream). Wood varnish.
Palate: Sweet. Peaty, medicinal. Hint of seaweed and iodine. But not as pungent as an Islay malt. A cardboardy note.
Finish: Dry; slightly hot. Spicy.
Comment: A marine character but more whispering than speaking up.
7.3
Taster   Dave Broom
Nose: The first whisky I've ever come across which smells like hickory-smoked dry roast peanuts. Pimenton. Dense and oily, but that hickory note is all pervading.
Palate: And it's there on the palate as well alongside a slightly artificial rose note. Splits on the palate, between the slick and the dry.
Finish: The slick wins on the finish.
Comment: Just plain odd.
6.5
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