Karuizawa 1987, Bot. 2003, Cask No. 2114
Colour: dark gold. Nose: we aren’t too far from the 1988 but it’s rather more polished and less winey. More fudge and caramel, butterscotch and mild ‘sherriness’. Whiffs of sour apples, damp wood, freshly sawn oak. With water: oh, immense whiffs of menthol! Vicks! Then mint-flavoured nougat. Once again, water works great even if the difference is less striking than with the 1988. Hints of soft cheese as well. Mouth (neat): thick, fat and very spicy at the attack, with a lot of ginger. High wood extraction it seems. With water: indeed. The oak got louder, and so did the spices. Pepper, nutmeg and cinnamon. Loses points here. Also a tad cardboardy. Finish: long but rather oaky. Comments: exactly the opposite of the 1988. Started better, ended ‘worse’ and doesn’t swim too well. SGP:452 - 80 points.
Tasting note by Serge Valentine Whiskyfun