Ichiro's Malt & Grain Japanese Blended Whisky
Ichiro Akuto is a legend. There are few in the whisky world with as deft a hand, so deep a knowledge, or such a cult following. All of which renders Ichiro’s Malt & Grain a must-try.
Shrouded in mystery, it’s a blend of both malt and grain whisky, including not just components from Japan, but also elements from around the globe. These interlopers are rumoured to be from America, Canada, Scotland and Ireland; as the label says: “This is worldwide blended whisky.”
Pouring a dram, you’ll discover Werther’s Original, vanilla ice cream, foam banana sweets, granola, lemon squash, gingerbread, pepper, oak spices and a mix of toasted hazelnuts and chestnuts. There’s also something for the white wine drinker; the peach, apricot and toasted nuts calling to mind Pinot Gris, and the hay, tropical fruit, cut grass, kaffir lime and floral notes akin to New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. It’s a fabulously complex drop, and it’s honestly hard to think of many better blended whiskies in the world.
Chichibu is a modern legend, founded in 2004 by Ichiro Akuto, formerly of Suntory, Karuizawa and BenRiach. In addition to an already impressive CV, this man also rescued Hanyu Distillery’s last remaining casks, propelling him into hero territory within the whisky world. Chichibu, based in Saitama, became operational in 2008 and produces malt whisky in tiny volumes but of exceptional quality. The attention to detail is phenomenal, as illustrated by the fact the team travel to Norfolk every year to make their own malt and even cooper their own barrels and Mizunara washbacks. Releases are snapped up by its cult following, so anything you see available – such as this – represents a fleeting and intriguing opportunity. Something very special is happening at this young distillery – there’s a freedom and vibrancy rare in this industry – those who invest ahead of the curve will be mightily rewarded.
£10.29 per 100.00ml
SKU No.: 3147921
Style No.: 766132
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