Post by Stefan Van Eycken, Tokyo
In February 2016, French importer Les Whiskies du Monde will be releasing a new Japanese whisky specifically developed for the European market: Yamazakura 16.
‘Yamazakura’ is a relatively new brand in the Sasanokawa portfolio – a high-end brand to complement their bottom-shelf whiskies destined for mixing. A few expressions are available in Japan (some of them at prices that are a bit steep, e.g. a 20yo single cask – again, provenance undisclosed – retails for over 30,000 yen), but this Yamazakura 16 will be exclusively available in Europe. It was aged for 16 years in ex-bourbon casks before being transferred to tanks for an undisclosed period of time, and then briefly returned to ex-bourbon casks to ‘wake up’ the spirit. It contains a relatively high proportion of grain whisky (80% corn, 20% malt) and is bottled at 40% (which may be the abv at which it was resting in the tanks). It’s limited to 1,992 bottles. Expected to retail for around 130 euro.