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Nikka Miyagikyo 12 Year Old

Burnt Marshmallow Contender

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@OJKReview by @OJK

14th Sep 2010


Nikka Miyagikyo 12 Year Old
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Nose, Taste, Finish and Balance are graded out of 2.5 each:

Nose: Immediately a huge serving of malt and cereal, mixed in with honey and rhubarb. A second approach reveals a fair amount of accompanying smoke, as well the woody aroma of an over-heated antique shop, all working to give this malt a wonderfully complex nose. 2.0

Taste: A medium bodied coating of gentle oak-laden spice envelopes the palate, offering a platform for the rhubarb and vanillas to work their magic. The honey and malt-coated cereal is ever-present yet not as abundant as on the nose. 2.5

Finish: A fluffy burnt marshmallow finish, with the marshmellow having been held in the fire for too long, and thus picking up the smoke and wood flavours from the fire, as well as a slightly bitter kick from the burnt edges. 2.0

Balance: Miyagikyo and Yoichi are deservedly the two single malt jewels in the Nikka crown, and I've now had the pleasure of sampling both. Unfortunately the Yoichi that I reviewed was only a 10 year old, and thus it may not be fair to compare it with this 12 year old Miyagikyo. Nonetheless I do feel that there is a greater depth of character to be found in this whisky. The Miyagikyo possesses a more pronounced and complex sweetness, as well as a more refined edge of smoke and spice, thus making it a luxuriously complex malt and ideal for after dinner. I speculate that the Yoichi 12 year old may be of an equal standing, however its vibrancy will most likely be better suited to an early evening starter. What it does show however is that Nikka do have two very fine single malts up their sleeve, more than capable of rivalling Suntory's Hahushu and Yamazaki malts. And when it comes to the sweet-malt championship belt, any bout between Nikka's Miyagikyo and Suntory's Yamazaki is sure to go the full 12 rounds. 2.0

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jeanluc commented

"Over-heated antique shop" - a great description of that dusty but pleasant aroma with a faint whiff of old wood polish and well worn upholstery.

Very evocative @OJK

13 years ago 0

OJK commented

Many thanks @Jean-Luc! I agree, the dust and the old wood polish is definitely part of that whole aroma. I'd say it's definitely more appetising in the glass than in the shop!

13 years ago 0