Re: Japanese Whisky Live Tasting - April 10-24th
Karuizawa 1967/2009, cask #6426 58.4%
I noticed this has gotten into silly prices recently, so I have to crack it open before the resale values get too tempting. Now we'll see if it's really worth all the hype!
Nice wax seal for the cork, not too fancy but still gives a bit of a 'special' feel.
Ok even neat the nose is very nice. I get a heavily oaked sherry profile, surprisingly similar to the ancient G&M Strathislas actually.
Nosing further, some menthol and pine needles/tar. The sherry is present but not as sweet & round as with the 1982, the age definitely shows but not at all overdone. I actually get a light whiff of peat, too. So far so good..
It's complex. The mouthfeel starts soft with a delicate sherry taste, loads of depth, oaky acidic bitterness on the sides of my tongue. There is a sweetness reminiscent of something toasted. And lots of everything else, I didn't get nearly all that was going on and that can only be good. I think several more sips are needed in order to get to know this one!
There is definitely something coffee-like and chocolate. There is a whiff of mentholy oak. The aftertaste is long with a sweet maltiness coating my tongue, sherry and oak now in the sidelines. I don't get anything like the wild pepperiness of the 'youngster', this is a very flavourful but gentle old timer.
The sherry is now stronger on the nose. Got to add some water while the dram lasts.
As with the 1982, the nose gets less sweet and more oaky with water. I get red berries-like acidic aromas now. The remaining sweetness is more malty than sherried now, interesting effect. The oak is dry and mentholy.
The mouthfeel is soft and luxurious and quite brilliantly balanced by the malt and acidic oakiness with the sherry still doing its thing on the tip of the tongue.
The aftertaste seems to go on and on and on. I get slight peaty whiffs now that the taste is slowly fading in my mouth.
Ok, on my first try this definitely feels like being worth the hype. It's of very very respectable age, absolutely delicious, massive depth and real complexity. It's not the least tired, quite playful actually.
The level of sherry-oak interplay and balance reminds me very much of the 40yo G&M Strathisla I have, yet this has so much more into it.
I'm gonna quite now before I start to sound silly.