Hibiki is special and it isn’t just because of Bill Murray and his promotion of Hibiki 17 in Lost in Translation. With regards to my earlier statement that malt-and-grain is not a bad word, many fans of Hibiki seem to overlook that it, too is a Blended, or malt-and-grain whisky! Aged predominantly in umeshu (Japanese apricot liqueur) casks, Hibiki is soft, spicy, round and smooth with no heat from ethanol and barley any tannin. There are notes of dark fruit compote, lapin cherry, and the sweetest kind of cigar smoke, more of a vanilla e-cigarette. The palate is buttery, round and soft; the finish long. Hibiki 21 definitely can appeal to the masses. In fact, so can Hibiki 17 and the rest of the series. I look forward to tasting their No Age Statement to be released later this spring and seeing if they are able to convey this soft and sexy style even at the introductory level. (EF)
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