Post by Stefan of Tokyo Whisky Hub
Today, the second release in Liquors Hasegawa's Karuizawa series "Colors of Four Seasons" went on sale. This time, they selected a cask from the final vintage (#5173) - distilled on December 1st, 2000 and bottled 12 years and 2 months later at 64.8% abv. The success of their first release (just 82 bottles) probably gave them a bit of confidence to go for a cask with a slightly higher outturn (185 bottles). The result was pretty much the same, though: all of it was gone in less than 3 hours. I had the chance to try it today and it's definitely a young Karuizawa, which sounds a bit like stating the obvious, but those of you who have had the chance to try a few different 2000 Karuizawas will understand what I mean. This whisky hasn't had the first-fill sherry cask boost that other recent releases from the same vintage have had. It's fresh - which ties in with the seasons theme: suggestive of spring, according to the staff - a little rough, a little "dirty"- in the good sense of the word! - and it has that slightly "metallic" edge that typifies the Karuizawa spirit, which is not always easy to pick up in older and/or 1st-fill-sherry-cask matured expressions. It'll be interesting to see what sort of cask they're going to find "summer" and "winter" in. They're still looking but it promises to be an interesting little series, so keep an eye on what they're up to when summer approaches!