Thursday, August 20, 2015

Bowmore Mizunara

Post by Stefan Van Eycken, Tokyo

It seems like these days there's hardly any news about Japanese whisky that isn't - though initially inspiring - greeted with torrential criticism (usually related to either scarcity of availability or the stratospheric heights of the price tag attached - occasionally both...). The latest bit of news following that pattern is the newly unveiled (in Europe, that is!) Bowmore Mizunara.
A NAS whisky that spent the last 3 years in Mizunara casks, bottled at 53.9% abv and limited to 2,000 bottles, it got people all excited... until news spread that it would be priced at about 750GBP, which is pretty steep. For an interesting perspective on the issue of pricing, check Oliver Klimek's post here.

It was an open secret that there were mizunara casks at Bowmore distillery - Japanese whisky fans visiting the distillery had spotted them (and taken pictures - which we've seen on a number of occasions.) Incidentally, from the pictures it seems like they were not virgin mizunara casks, but ex-Yamazaki casks. Interestingly, Suntory blenders - in response to some 'mizunara finishes' released by other companies (you can imagine who) - have always maintained that "there is no such thing as a mizunara finish", because mizunara needs a long time to have the right sort of impact on the maturation process. It seems like they have either changed their mind or that the above doesn't apply to the warehouses at Bowmore.

We doubt we'll get to try it - even at a bar it would be prohibitively expensive - which is why we are inviting you, dear reader, to provide some notes on the actual liquid. Watch this space - or not...


Alessandro Coggi said...

I think too it will be difficoult to have a dram. Speculators are already alerted...I will try with some friends to buy a bottle and open it!

Gert Claus said...

In my opinion Bowmore is testing the flexibility of the premium market with an Asian inspired whisky like this. Really curious how soon they will sell out and when bottles will end up in auctions at even more insane prices. Do we know anything on the allocation of these 2000 bottles in Europe, Asia and USA?