CHICHIBU Paris Edition 2018 57,3%
Single Malt Whisky, Japan / Honshu - Saitama, 70cl, Ref: 54931
A blend of three hogsheads distilled in 2011 produced with a variety of barley known as Tipple and two ex-wine casks, one distilled in 2012 and the other in 2009, produced from the barley variety Braemar, this small batch Chichibu highlights the research, careful selection and talent of master blender Ichiro Akuto. With remarkable freshness and rich expression, it stages a whole raft of fruits each more different from the next. Full of exuberance, each sequence in the palette of flavours and aromas has no qualms about smashing through the barriers supposed to mark out its borders, even flirting at times with peat.
Profile: the rich initial nose is intensely fruity (lichee, plume), vanilla and spicy (saffron). It then becomes honeyed (acacia) and slightly animal. The dynamic attack reveals new spices (clove, nutmeg). The mid-palate is characterised by citrus fruit (orange, grapefruit) and wildflower. The smooth finish evokes an apricot tart as black grapes add to the fruity register.
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- Appearance : old gold.
- Nose : elegant, rich. Intensely fruity (plum, lichee, canary melon), vanilla and saffrony, the initial nose reveals impressive depth and concentration. It develops into deliciously honeyed (acacia), roasted (coffee) and slightly animal notes. Candied citrus fruit (lemon, kumquat) and fresh walnut wonderfully punctuate an aromatic palette that overflows with sensuality.
- Palate : lively, dynamic. Strong spices (clove, nutmeg) give an alarming rhythm to the start of the palate which also closely reflects the malted barley. Next, liquorice stick accentuates the invigorating bitter-sweet character of the flavour palette. With lots of distinction, the mid-palate wavers between citrus fruit (orange, grapefruit), cocoa bean, wildflower (dandelion) and acacia honey.
- Overall : long, smooth. The very rich and creamy finish evokes a vanilla and apricot tart. Notes of black fruit (grape, bramble) then enrich the already very luxuriant register. The mentholated retronasal olfaction releases the spicy and slightly earthy aromas of a Havana cigar. The empty glass is characterised by notes of gentian and coriander.
- The brand
Created in 2008, Chichibu Japanese single malt whisky is already well-known to Japanese whisky enthusiasts, and to whisky connoisseurs generally. Entirely produced at the distillery and soon, for some expressions, with local barley and peat, and even Japanese oak casks, Chichibu is on its way to becoming the first 100% Japanese whisky, thanks to the efforts of its creator, Ichiro Akuto. Fermented in vats made of mizunara (a variety of Japanese oak that is very highly regarded for whisky) and distilled in small stills, the resulting liquid presents a surprising maturity and complexity, even when it is very young. A beautifully crafted whisky.
Founded in 2007 by Ichiro Akuto, the grandson of the founder of the Hanyu distillery, Chichibu has been active since February 2008. Consisting of two stills made to order in Scotland by Forsyth’s, this distillery has a very exclusive following, it is not only the first Japanese single malt distillery since Hakushu, but also the smallest. In 2008 Ichiro started selling a range of very young whiskies called ‘Newborn’, before launching his first ‘real’ whisky, a three-year-old at cask strength, at Whisky Live Paris 2011. The distillery also houses the last stocks of Karuizawa, Kawasaki and Hanyu, and has its own bottling facility.
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