Dram Review: White Oak Akashi Aged 15 Years

[58.0%•15 Years Old•Bottled in 2013•Official Bottling•Cask No. 40100•Single Cask Release of 795 Bottles]

I would like to put this on record, the White Oak Akashi I have tasted prior to this expression have been, to put it mildly, rather average.

Granted, the stuff I had were the recent releases; mostly NAS, others aged between 3-5 years. I never got the chance to sample their older offerings. So when I was at Bar White Oak, that was the bottle I jumped on almost immediately after seeing it.

Nose:

On the nose, the stark contrast is immediately noticed. A dignified and regal mahogany note, there is a rich cheese influence from the sherry. Vague incense with a touch of burnt toast. An addictive coal smoke note lurking as well.

Palate & Finish:

Blindingly sweet on the palate, the syrupy note is excessive but also very satisfying. Lemony with malted biscuits as the smoke develops. Intense date syrup with a heavy assertive woodiness coming on. Rustic and grungy, it’s a powerful whisky with a mean character.

It finishes off with the indulgence of chocolate mud cake and a vegetative note.

Thoughts:

It’s a whisky that makes one asks, “what the fuck happened to Akashi?!”… I suppose it’s the dram to try if you have not experienced the glory of White Oak Akashi before.

-Nicholas