Damn that sounds dramatic! The “Final Vintage！” Final, no more、最後。Hanyu is the distillery that the much acclaimed Ichiro Akuto (肥戸伊知郎) worked his magic at before closing it up and starting the new Chichibu distillery – by the way, the Mizunara washbacks there are way cool. This was actually my first Hanyu I have tried, I am looking forward to trying some more soon though!
10 Years old, distilled in 2000
Single Cask, Cask No. 6092
No chill filtration, no coloring
Nose: Dark red fruits, sandal wood, rum raisins, cherries
Palate: Chewey, waxy, oily, cinnamon, dark fruit sweetness, there is a big presence of sandal wood, it reminds me of Japanese furniture – Tansu（箪笥）。A tinge of bitterness on the end, but it doesn’t distract much.
Finish: Medium, a sandal wood lollipop with a simple syrup coating.
With water: Water turned down the alcohol and made it more approachable. It amplified the sweet fruit tones some but over all it didn’t make that much of a difference and I preferred it without water.
Comments: Ichiro must have some extremely active casks in his repertoire. There is a good depth of flavor in here for 10 years. However, you can still tell it is a relatively young whisky and everything hasn’t quite come together. This is a tough one to describe as the dominant presence in this whisky is what I associate with Japanese furniture – maybe a slight similarity to incense? This is for those that do like sweeter whiskies, however I found it solid for a 10 year old. The cask strength also helps for me.