Monday, June 11, 2012

Karuizawa 11YO "Asama"


Post by Stefan of Tokyo Whisky Hub.

The new "Asama" 11-year old Karuizawa expression has just been released in Sweden and is available at Systembolaget. It is a vatting of casks from the last two vintages (i.e. 1999 and 2000), but unlike the TIBS bottlings - vattings of the same vintages - it's bottled at 46% abv, i.e. not at cask-strength. It's priced at SEK649 (which is a little over 7,000 yen), extraordinarily and uncharacteristically reasonable. The TIBS vattings were far from spectacular, and that's putting it mildly. It would be interesting to hear from whisky enthusiast in Sweden what they think of the new "Asama". Number One Drinks got a large number of casks from the last two vintages when they bought the entire remaining inventory. Here's hoping "Asama" is not just an attempt to get rid of some not-so-desirable casks, but that it's actually a well-composed vatting. The jury is out...

10 comments:

Filip Ling said...

I just opened a bottle, so can leave a small review later on.

I might be able to help ship a few bottles outside Sweden but i am mostly interested in trade then!

Stefan said...

Looking forward to your review!

Stefan said...

Looking forward to your review!

Nonjatta said...

Looking forward to the review, too!

Filip Ling said...

Second time trying this to give it a proper judgement.

Nose: Starts very shy with earth, mushrooms and winy notes. Needs a good 30minutes to start developing in the glass.

Palate: Sweet burned oak, mushrooms and dry sherry.

Finish: Not much here, almost dies out directly leaving a faint dry sherry taste.

Its not that its bad but its boring, you expect more from this distillery. Tired second-fill sherry casks didn't do it for this one.

74p

Filip Ling said...

It seems like Chris wrote that they want to get rid of some of these not so good casks.. Anything that says Karuizawa sells out so when the news arrives that it will be released a small vatting of 600btls. in total, people buys whatever it is.

A handfull of bottles will be available through my good friends at Whiskysite.nl in July. If you want one only for the collectors point please contact Jack, do not know what price he will charge yet!

Stefan said...

Mmm, disappointing... but to be honest, I kind of expected it (although I was hoping I would be wrong). The combination of "multi-vintage"/"vatting" and a low price sets off alarm bells in my head immediately, as it seems to scream "average" or even "inferior" when it comes to these Karuizawas. Thanks for taking the time to leave your impressions. Much appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Bought the Asama, theres been some good reviews also, 84-85 points.

Anonymous said...

I liked this alot, 86-87p.
It,s cheap and really worth a try.

Anonymous said...

hi there! found this on whiskyfun :http://www.whiskyfun.com/archiveoctober12-1.html#021012
seems Serge did quite like it :-)
might low price means low quality is some minds??? ;-) anyway, worth checking and is on my shopping list!