Whisky Review: Nikka Pure Malt Black
Category: Blended Japanese Malt Whisky
Origin: Nikka’s distilleries likely Yoichi and Miyagikyo
What they say:
The “Black” is a Pure Malt (Blended Malt) whisky which is characterized by powerful peat, rich taste and firm flavor. The unique bottle that has a laboratory feel to it was designed by the same designer who created From the Barrel.
What I say:
Thanks again to Richard at Adventures in Whiskyland for the sample, it is nice to have a resident Japanese Whisky expert! This whisky has received 92 and 95 points (differing batches) from Jim Murray in his whisky bible and is held in rather high esteem. Much debate around this whisky centres on the belief that the peated component is made at Nikka’s Ben Nevis distillery, however Yoichi is also renowned for being Peaty and salty/coastal after Masatake Taketsuru setup his ideal distillery to mirror the types of whisky he learned to make at Longmorn in Speyside and Hazelburn in Campbeltown. Again we may never really know the constituents of this all malt blend.
Full caramel gold (10/20) medium tears with finer legs
Slightly musty/fusty and old, mild peat smoke, mossy in places and also ashen/embers, wood smoke, rich dark malt, sweet crème brulee topping/caramelised demerara sugar, vanilla icing/frosting
Toffee and charred wood strike first, again a slightly savoury/umami flavour, rounded and richer then the last sample (Nikka From The Barrel) highlighting the lack of grain whisky, medium-char oak wood, dark chocolate becomes coffee/coffee grounds, with a distinct bitterness
Medium, bittersweet oak and mocha/latte
Lovely, smooth on the palate and the peat influence lends it a wonderful bittersweet effect, like dark chocolate and coffee but with a shot of vanilla cream for a lovely textured mouthfeel.
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