If Japanese whisky now stands as an equal to Scotch, then it must be said that this status is owed in no small part to Karuizawa whisky. This sadly closed distillery was a small, craft orientated operation and resolutely adhered to a production centred around Golden Promise barley and the finest Sherry casks available. However, the quality of Karuizawa’s output was discovered too late as, like Port Ellen for example, the spirit requires long maturation to reach the heights that have garnered it such widespread praise in recent years.
This example was bottled for this year’s The Whisky Exchange -Whisky Show and managed to stand out among the events veritable Smörgåsbord of dramming delights – not to mention several other spectacular Karuizawa’s -. Its offers a rare opportunity to taste the distillery’s make devoid of the heavy sherry-influence that has helped build Karuizawa’s near mythical reputation, and thus maybe offering us a clearer glimpse of what was undoubtedly a top-quality new-spirit.