Hankyu Japanese Whisky Bottlings
Ichiro’s Malt Card Series, Ace of Spades 1985, 55% abv
Nose: Rich and quite fat. Chocolate-covered raisin with a hint of creosote and treacle. Yet still very pure with some complexity. Shows maturity.
Palate: Thick and very chewy. Like melting toffee in the mouth, balanced by an intense savoury edge, which then shifts into prunes macerated in brandy. Huge impact.
Finish: Dusty and lightly tannic.
Comments: If you like your whisky in yer face then this is for you.
Ichiro’s Malt Card Series, King of Diamonds 1988, 56% abv
Nose: Immediate complexity. Cheddar cheese, cream, but also a firm, nutty quality. A touch of burlap, smoke and then with water it shifts into sandalwood, citrus, pineapple, pine.
Palate: Dances in the mouth, moving from spice into flowers then to smoke which builds subtly.
Finish: Long, mixing spice and sweetness.
Comments: This has classic Japanese finesse. Great whisky has balance and this has it. In diamonds… not spades
Ichiro’s Malt Card Series, Queen of Hearts 1990, 54% abv
Nose: Round, tangy and slightly fat. Plaster, raspberry, tablet and vanilla. A touch of smoke mingling with estery perfume.
Palate: Lighter than the nose suggests and slightly drier. An interesting battle between deep sweetness in the mid-palate and fizzing spiciness. Good balance.
Finish: Zesty soft fruits. Pecan.
Comments: Fine balance and an intriguing palate. An impressive series
Ichiro’s Malt Card Series, King of Spades 1986, 57% abv
Ichiro’s Malt Card Series, Jack of Clubs 1991, 56% abv
Ichiro’s Malt Card Series, Two of Clubs 2000, 54% abv
Dave Broom’s tasting notes reproduced by kind permission of Whisky Magazine