Hakushu 1988, Bot. 2003, Cask No. 8J40514
Colour: gold. Nose: this one is much more phenolic, peaty, almost resinous. I must say this peatiness works well with the rather extreme woodiness, it gives the malt sort of an extra-dimension. Antiques shop, old polished furniture, hints of turpentine, cigar box, leather, shoe polish… Lots happening in there, even if it’s not precisely refined and elegant. Imagine an old Jaguar, burr walnut, Connolly leather and all that… Too bad the whole is a bit rough. Mouth: peat right away, then wax, then spices. Goes on with chewing tobacco (I know, yuk, but it’s nice here), peppered cooked fruits, smoked ham, smoked tea… Gets a little too hot, let’s try it with water: we have the same profile expect an added waxiness and quite some salt coming through. Now, the very long finish is very interesting, with an unusual mix of ripe bananas, smokiness and pepper. I liked this one even better than the unpeated versions, it was really entertaining. 88 points (and thanks, Bert).
Tasting note by Serge Valentine Whiskyfun