Suntory releases ‘no-age’ whiskies

Suntory has claimed to “challenge the status quo” of Japanese whisky with two new no-age-statement whiskies from its Yamazaki and Hakushu distilleries, writes Amy Hopkins.

Hakushu Distiller's Reserve with cartonYamazaki Distiller’s Reserve and Hakushu Distiller’s Reserve, described by Suntory as “the next generation of Japanese whisky”, have been created from a number of casks hand selected by a team of blenders.

Liquid contained in both whiskies has been aged for between eight and 20 years, though Suntory have decided not to declare an age statement on the bottle, claiming that “age should not be the sole parameter of quality”.

In particular, Suntory claimed the new releases presented an ideal opportunity to showcase some of its younger malts “that possess a rare vibrancy and energy”.

The distiller said: “the quest was to deliver a truly execptional Japanese no-age-statement whisky without taboo”.

“Distiller’s Reserve represents the House of Suntory’s ongoing commitment to challenge what a Japanese whisky can be.”

Yamakazi Distiller’s Reserve is comprised of liquid aged in sherry casks, mizunara casks, French oak Bordeaux wine casks and American oak casks.

Blended by Suntory chief blender Shinji Fukuyo, the 43% abv whisky is described as having notes of strawberry, cherry and mizunara on the nose, and flavours of raspberry, peach and coconut.

Yamazaki Distiller's Reserve with carton

Hakushu Distiller’s Reserve uses a young lightly peated malt along with a heavily peated and 18-year-old American oak whisky in its blend.

Also blended by Suntory chief blender Shinji Fukuyo and bottled at 43% abv, the whisky is described as having notes of peppermint, melon and cucumber on the nose, and flavours of yuzu, grapefruit and lemon thyme.

“The name Distiller’s Reserve says it all. These two new whiskies represent the high end of Japanese whisky”, said Fukuyo at a London unveiling of the two blends.

Both expressions will launch in the UK in April at an RRP of £42.

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