Whisky Review: Hakushu 白州 Aged 12 Years

Style: Forest fruits, Lightly peated and Complex

Nose:

Black pepper sprinkling on green spearmint forming an intriguing, dry spearhead. Distant coastal waves, faint grilled mackerel. Fragrant tropical fruits combine with plenty of fresh pine notes. White vanilla cream, mineral kiss, floral nectar slowly rises up. Finishes with fresh oak and barley on the drier side.

Palate:

Banquet of overripe fruits mashing with white flower nectar and green pine, wood smoke mindlessly weaving into the fruity core. Hitting a peppermint spike, more black pepper sprinkling at the top. Stewed fruits, honeycomb slab with a touch of smoked ham. Red liquorice slipping under, vanilla milk binding with subtle mineral notes. Green pine humming at the back.

Finish:

Stewed fruits and honey wax giving a pleasant tail, a touch of greenness lifting up the tone.

Thoughts:

It has been a while since I revisit Hakushu, and I still like it very much. Refreshing green pine leading the way and fragrant stewed fruits sitting pretty at the core, multiple nuances building around it. A bit dry to begin with (Bottle oxidization? My Hakushu 12 has been opened for more than 3 years now, but I don’t think so…), a joyful presentation nonetheless with exceptional complexity. Quality drop.

☆ [Recommended]

[43% • Original Bottling • General Release • Circa 2013]

-Esmond