Hakushu 12 YO 43.5%
A 12 year old single malty from Suntory. The Hakushu distillery sits in the forests not far from the Japanese Alps.
Nose: Light and crisp with fresh notes of cut hay and sweet mixed peels, a little hazelnut and barley malt.
Palate: Clean with notes of cut fruits, gentle barley malt and smoke. A floral character with citrus zest.
Finish: Sweet and spicy.
Hate to disagree....
Hakushu is a peated Japanese whiskey made from a non-peated and a heavily peated malt. The result is a whiskey with a fine balance of earthy flavors and smoke, without a heavy taste of phenols or the more iodine flavors found in Islay whiskeys. Despite being filtered with charcoal and bamboo filters, the spirit has very little bourbon or charcoal flavors in it. Very sweet, very refined, with little acidity and a lower alcohol content than is typical of peated whiskeys. Flavors of lemon, smoke, green tea, and a salinity which reminds me of soy sauces and teriyaki flavors; there's a flavor of pine or pine needles, and the taste of how autumn leaves smell. There's also something in the center of the palate that reminds me very much of Suntory's blended Hibiki, which uses both the Hakushu and Yamazaki malts - it's a sourness, and a peated flavor which is distinct in Suntory's blends, and absolutely delicious.
Balance of sour and sweet flavors, tempered with the smoky and earthy quality. Color is desirably dark without being obviously altered by caramel e150 - though to my knowledge, there is caramel coloring in this whiskey. Overall, would highly recommend this malt if you're looking for a great summer whiskey to be enjoyed on the rocks or as a highball. While some of the flavor profile completely disappears with the presence of water, the smokiness and more pine flavors are retained and become prominent in the malt, making it a highly refreshing spirit for warmer days.
20th May 2015
Michael "Olaf" Kappele
very smooth, exactly what the review said, i treated as a Good 12yr Scotch, was not dissapointed, i work in a liquor store in Ohio, i will recommend this to others, damn nice job,
9th May 2015
Sweet, smooth goodness
I agree it's sweet-- a little smoke but I don't get any peat----- a lot of people will like this one--- I think it's closer to an Irish taste then a Scotch--- or for it's own merits a Japanese whiskey ---a higher than 43 percenter may help it ---- I describe this as a non offensive drink that would be never need water--- because it's made smooth to please the mass--- a blend from the same distillery and almost blended into a sweet surprise your drinking alcohol drink/--
8th January 2015
This is a sweet and smooth whisky with gentle, easy notes. Easy sipping. No water needed. Love it.
24th February 2014
This "Whiskey" was far too sweet! I felt it had notes similar to sake. Not a bad response, however terrible when you expect whiskey. There are fine Japanese single malts out there. this one just isn't one of them.
31st December 2013
Light peat and smoke throughout. Nose like a rum raising ice cream, rick and peaty on the palate with a candied finish.
27th June 2013
this is an outstanding 12 yo whisky. I think the description by the chaps of Master of Malt explains the character of this whisky very well. Its fresh, crisp character with notes of freshly cut hay makes it something really special. An absolute pleasure to drink imo. I love it and would probably go as far as to say it's the best 12 yo whisky I have had the pleasure of drinking (and I have tried a few)