Whisky 2016 – 102-105 Campbelltoun Loch, Tokyo

The Campbelltoun Loch is small, cramped, run down (don’t expect suit jackets) and full of whisky gems. It’s serious whisky drinking business.102 – Ben Nevis The Whisky Agency 2013 1995 18 Years
Old leather, cake mix, almonds, green herbs, hazelnuts, as it opens up more and more cake mix – it is stunning. Slow to start but this amazingly long cake mix thing which lasts and lasts, apricot jam in a cake.

103 – The Prestonfield 1975 Ben Nevis Cask 7440 La Maison du Whisky 34 Years
Cake mix, crushed ants, hazelnuts, apricots and orange juice. Chocolate, tobacco and cigars, apricot jam on buttered toast, hazelnuts, chocolate. Smells like it is going to come alive in the glass?!?

104 – The Old Malt Cask Ben Nevis 19 Years 2013 Ref: HL12148
Pancakes, honey, oranges, stewed apricots, dark toffee and brown sugar. Apricots, green herbs, slightly bitter, crepes, vanilla, Fanta, malty.

105 – Kingsbury Glenrothes 2004 11 years
Rubber, sarsaparilla, smoked paprika, chicos, sulphur. Chocolate and vanilla, Xmas spices, ginger biscuits, cocoa powder on vanilla ice cream, roast chicken.

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Whisky 2015 – 117-122 (The Mash Tun, Meguro, Tokyo)

I had two great nights at The Mash Tun in Meguro, Tokyo. It’s a short walk from Meguro station and by Tokyo standards easy to find.

The Mash Tun has the largest collection of Cadenhead bottlings I’ve seen, maybe close to 40. While many of the locals (in fact now that I think about it all of them) were tucking into Cadenhead, I was there for the Japanese stuff you just can not get in Australia.

  
117 – Ichiro’s Malt – Whisky Talk 2015
Typical Japanese creaminess, cocoa, autumn leaves, salt, slight gassy note, angry dust. Tastes like it smells. Which is unusual. The peat is really subtle. I can taste this in my throat.

118 – Blackadder and Ichiro’s malt 5 year
Chestnut honey, flour, floral, ginger, egg white, clove and cola. Honey and cola. Really delicious. The sweetness is complex like brown/black sugar.

119 – Karuizawa TIBS 2012
Rubber, apricots, chocolate, maple syrup. Rubber, vanilla, pepper, sulfur, clove, salt, maple syrup.

  
120 – Fuji Gotemba Single Grain Blender’s Choice 2014 029/500
Bananas, coconut, formic acid, some acetone, apricots with ice cream. Butter, crushed ants, vanilla, tropical fruits, toasted hazelnuts.

121 – Ichiro’s malt 2015 Tokyo International Bar Show Cask 2360
Wow just wow – favourite for the year!! Banana, ice cream, malty bread with butter, tomato paste, fruit tingles, slight vino cotto, CHICOS. Yeast, brown bread, vanilla, banana bread, prunes, plums, grapes.

  
122 – Hanyu King and 6 of Spades Cask 123 (Grappa Cask)
Slight woody pine notes, vanilla, roses, dried strawberries, chocolate and a bit medicinal. Peppery and spicy, instant coffee, a touch of vanilla, strawberries in a day old chocolate cake, length that lasts forever.

  

Cocktails at Bar Gen Yamamoto, Tokyo

I’m not a big fruit cocktail kinda guy but all the rave reviews I’ve read about Bar Gen Yamamoto, I had to give it a whirl. And what an amazing cocktail bar it is. More like a sushi bar than a cocktail bar, with a large wooden counter and 8 seats.

Gen-san is a lovely host and his drinks are superb. He happened to have a Sullivan’s Cove American Oak and a get this, Ichiro’s Malt Monochrome Joker! These are used for cocktails mind you. Unfortunately neither were in my cocktails for the evening, however he produced an amazing Yamazaki 12 and Kabocha (Japanese Pumpkin) drink pictured below.

A truly unique and beautiful cocktail bar.

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Whisky 2014 – 141

141 – Nikka Yoichi 500ml
It’s Christmas Day in Tokyo. I arrived into some public transport disasters, however, I finally made it to Meguro. Walked into a bottle shop and found 4 litre bottles of Suntory White but I decided to pick up a more reasonably sized 500ml bottle of Nikka Yoichi, something I haven’t seen before.

It’s light and creamy with a few coffee notes. For ¥1800 it’s a bargain for Australians. The type of whisky where you don’t need to think to much or you’ve had too much too eat. In fact it would go really well with Christmas pud.

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