Distilled: 2000 - Bottled: 2009 - Cask#8779 - Cask type: Hogshead - Outturn: 230 - ABV: 62.9% - Age: 9-years-old
Nose: Golden brown puff pastry straight from the oven glazed with olive oil, or is it straight up olive bread? These aromas are rolling around in sweet peat and char-grilled Gingko nuts/seeds on skewers. The malt is relatively blossomy (violet and sweet floral notes) and musky with fresh and damp straw (in a very good way). Quite nutty - roasted salted almonds/pistachio with milk chocolate, in fact bring on the Nuttella spread at certain intervals. Very chameleon like - just got really complex: sweet peat - earthy (rich soil), wood planks, and creaming soda that I find in many Hanyu bottlings. Water initially transforms the aromas completely - becomes herbal: lemon thyme/lemon grass, and limoncello (Italian citrus-based lemon liqueur) before drifting off.
Taste: Slightly bitter (in a great way) with gorgeous/sophisticated peat and Sansho spice: ground berries from the Prickly Ash Tree (earthy and tangy with a bit of lemon - that lemon thyme perhaps?). Quite velvety and prickly with pencil shavings, and char grilled Gingko nuts. Yeasty and biscuity. Diluted makes things a bit salty. Is this a typical Hanyu? In my opinion - NO! Is it an active cask? Yes!
Finish: Spicy, prickly, and bitter with a medium to long grilled Ginkgo nut and lemon thyme mouthfeel. The peat is lustfully there.
Comment: A fairly complex Hanyu in my opinion - very complex for a 9yo indeed. Posses quite a few "new" or "non typical" flavours and aromas associated with my experience and Hanyu malt. This is another of my "must find another bottle for retirement" malt. It is also a fairly light looking Hanyu (obviously cask influence). Yum!
For an alternate review check out The Japanese Whisky Review
Reviewed by Clint A