Monday, April 15, 2013

TIBS/Whisky Live 2013 Preview

Post by Stefan of Tokyo Whisky Hub

With just a few days to go before the most important event on the whisky calendar in Japan kicks off, we thought it would be useful to give a quick overview of the special drams that will be available at this year’s Tokyo International BarShow / Whisky Live.

There will be four commemorative bottlings from Japanese distilleries:

- Hanyu 1990
- Chichibu 2009
- Karuizawa 2000
- Yamazaki Mizunara

The last one is a special vatting for TIBS, centred around the 1984 vintage (but including younger and older components as well), and will be priced at a little over 50,000 yen. It may be worth taking this into account when putting together your Bar Show budget.
On the Scottish front, several craft distillers are bringing special releases to the show. There will be a:

- BenRiach 1985 Hogshead
- GlenDronach 2002 Sauternes Cask
- Kilchoman 2007 Sherry Cask
- Arran 2005 Peated
- Springbank 1993 Sherry Cask

And two special offerings from independent distillers:

- a Miltonduff 1982 from Duncan Taylor (in their Peerless collection)
- a cask-strength version of Samaroli’s Evolution

This last bottling promises to be quite something: it contains malts from every region in Scotland from every decade of the second half of the 20th century, the oldest one being a 1957 Mortlach, the youngest a 1997 Linkwood. A must-try dram! (It won’t be here until early June, but you can try it at the show. You may have to make up your mind on the spot – again, be prepared.)

As if all that wasn’t enough to keep your tastebuds happy, there are more stellar whiskies available for tasting under the Premium Voucher scheme. The list is too long, so we’ll just highlight a few drams that we’ll be sure to seek out:

- Glenglassaugh 1973 for Campbeltoun Loch & Shinanoya
- Glenglassaugh 1967 Red Port Style
- Hanyu 1986 Madeira Finish “salon de SHIMAJI” for Pen & Shinanoya
- Karuizawas from the 1970, 1972 and 1984 vintages
- Glendronach 1971
- Macallan 1979 World Wonders (see our review here)
- two new single casks from Nikka (a 1988 Yoichi and 2001 Miyagikyo)
- BenRiach 1977 Sauternes Cask
- Glen Grant 1985 from Samaroli
- the Yamazaki and Hakushu 25yo
- White Bowmore 43yo
and many others at prices that you just won’t find anywhere else in the world, and that’s a fact.

One more thing, in case you’re still thirsty after all this: a little bird told us the liquor section (B1) at Isetan Shinjuku – one of our favourite whisky places in Tokyo - has managed to get their hands on a couple of bottles of the 1967 Karuizawa for Taiwan (see our review here). And they may have some of the BarShow bottlings too… Check it out and be sure to tell them how you found out!

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