Post by Stefan Van Eycken, Tokyo
Yesterday, we reviewed the Hanyu that is part of the Ichiro’s Malt/‘Bak Chiang’ triptych released by LMdW. Today, we're looking at the 2 Chichibu single casks: one from the 2009 vintage (cask #641, 61.7%abv, First Fill Bourbon Barrel) and another from the 2010 vintage (cask #651, 61.6%abv, Bourbon Barrel – presumably not first fill). We’ll try them side by side… we’re fairly certain Mark Twain wasn’t thinking of whisky when he wrote about comparison being “the death of joy”.
If I could only have one, I’d go for the 2009, but it really is a matter of personal preference, not to mention mood, time of day, and all those other things that influence our choice of whisky. There doesn’t seem to be a shortage of single cask Chichibus these days – and part of this has to do with the fact that many private cask owners in Japan (who bought a cask when the distillery was set up) are impatient to bottle their cask – but these are the pick of the bunch as far as single casks released this year are concerned. In fact, I can only think of one other Chichibu single cask (the one released for Whisky Talk Fukuoka this year) that reaches the lofty heights that these two LMdW Chichibus inhabit.