Wednesday, August 28, 2013

2 New Old Mars Single Casks for Shinanoya

Post by Stefan Van Eycken, Tokyo

When Mars Shinshu stopped producing whisky in 1992, it seemed like the end of a whisky adventure with lots of ups and downs – more downs than ups, actually. Few, even in the company, could have predicted the incredible revival of Mars in the wake of the highball boom: critical acclaim for their old stock from the whisky community first at home and then abroad (with their “3+25” crowned ‘Best Blended Malt in the World’ at the last World Whiskies Awards) and a return to distilling in 2011, led by a young master distiller with a keen sense of craftsmanship and a think-outside-the-box mentality.
Two casks from the last year of production before the 19-year hiatus were bottled in 2004 (at 43%abv) and then left to refine inside the bottle… or forgotten, whichever you prefer: one a Spanish oak sherry butt (#1124, 275 bottles), the other an American white oak barrel (#1143, 358 bottles). The people at Shinanoya felt it was high time these bottles saw the light of day. They adorned them with lovely “Japonist” labels and will be releasing them officially, more than 9 years after they were filled, on September 12th.

A special Mars tasting event, led by the current master distiller, will be held at The Mash Tun in Tokyo on September 1st. We’ll be speaking to the Mars people about these and other forthcoming releases at the event and hope to be able to bring you more news from the good folk at ‘Shinshu factory’ then. Stay tuned…

Read more about Hombo Mars Distillery here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi, just wondering if you got a chance to try the Spanish oak yet, and what you think of it?