Kaiyo Mizunara Oak Cask Strength Japanese Whisky (750ml) SKU #1326848

$99.99

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Tasting Notes

Kaiyo is a negotiant bottler started by a drinks group led by former Asahi employee Mr. Watanabe who was able to purchase "teaspooned" malt whisky barrels from an unnamed Japanese whisky supplier via his connections in the industry ("teaspooning" is when a distiller adds a teaspoon of another whisky into the barrel before selling it, thus preventing the purchaser from claiming it as a single malt from that distillery). The whiskies are purchased as teaspooned new make (unaged distillates) and then put into Japanese Mizunara oak barrels from Ariake, considered one of the best manufacturers in the world (each new Mizunara barrel costs between $6500 - $7500). For those unfamiliar with the legend of Japanese Mizunara oak, it's become heralded in the whisky world both for the exotic flavors of incense, sandalwood, and coconut it passes along to the spirit, as well as its expense. Difficult to cooper and notoriously inefficient as a vessel, editions of Yamazaki and Bowmore aged in Mizunara wood have sold at four figure prices, making the Kaiyo whiskies in comparison seem like a steal. The cask strength version of Kaiyo Mizunara is basically a stronger, more intense version of the regular edition with everything turned up. The orange peel notes and oak spices on the nose jump out of the glass, the sandalwood and vanilla are bold on the palate, and there's a lot more concentration of oak on the finish. It's a more expressive and intense version of the desired Mizunara influence.

Staff Reviews

  • Jeffrey Jones
    By: Jeffrey Jones
    10/26/2017
    K&L Staff Member
    The cask strength Kaiyo is similar to the Kaiyo that is bottle at 43% abv. but it is fuller bodied and the flavors are more pronounced. With a splash of water it gets an almost creamy aspect. It is complex and offers interesting spice, pepper and wood notes that set this whiskey apart and help make it an unique experience.
  • David Driscoll
    By: David Driscoll
    10/25/2017
    K&L Staff Member
    If you're a fan of gentle, smooth, and restrained malt whiskies, then I think the standard Kaiyo is the way to go. However, if you like bold flavors, assertive spice, and lots of potency, then it's definitely worth the extra thirty bucks to bump up to the cask strength version because the Mizunara-influenced flavors explode on the palate with the extra proof. You get bursts of candied orange, coconut, and sweet malt, highlighted by sweet oak notes on the finish with lots of power. This is for the real whisky geeks.
  • Ryan Woodhouse
    By: Ryan Woodhouse
    10/24/2017
    K&L Staff Member
    As you might expect this is a bigger, bolder, more concentrated expression of the non cask strength bottling. It shares the same exotic spice notes, floral tones, sweet grains but has much more viscosity, weight and intensity on the palate. It's chewier...quite robust for a Japanese whisky...this is going to make a lot of people happy at (all things considered) a pretty inexpensive price point.

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