Suntory Whisky has revealed The Yamazaki Mizunara 2017 Edition. The new release is blended from a selection of single malt whiskies aged entirely in Mizunara casks for at least 18 years. The use of Mizunara — a rare oak native to Japan — has created a spicy whisky, reminiscent of incense and uniquely Japanese.
“I wanted to reveal the whisky’s soul; that is, the art of Mizunara — a heightened sense and awakened palate engaged through aromas and flavours never known before. Encountering it should be a moment of epiphany,” says Suntory’s chief blender, Shinji Fukuyo.
In his pursuit of a true Mizunara character, Fukuyo tasted a few hundred Mizunara whiskies and selected casks with a minimum age of 18 years, with a small portion of the blend exceeding 50 years of maturation.
Age is key to unlocking the signature taste of Mizunara — only a long maturation period can provide the distinctive spiciness and incense-like aromas, with notes of sandalwood and aloe wood that Suntory considers as the quintessential ‘Mizunara-ness.’
Mizunara oak is hard and permeable in nature, which made it a difficult wood to use in cask making, as it is hard to shape and join with precision and doesn’t retain liquid well. Through perseverance, Suntory’s craftsman have mastered this art of Mizunara cask-making, identifying the perfect trees to make their casks.
Presented in a beautiful wooden box crafted from recycled Suntory casks, the Yamazaki Mizunara 2017 Edition will be available to purchase from select retailers and on-premise venues from late September at $1,400 RRP. Only 5000 bottles will be available globally.
Yamazaki Mizunara 2017 Edition:
ABV: 48% vol. 700ml
Nose: A rich and elegant fragrance, aloe wood, cinnamon
Palate: A condensed sweetness, dry fruits, coconut and orange marmalade with silky palate texture
Finish: A distinctive spiciness lingers with Japanese incense, aloe wood, cinnamon, and tartness