Whisky Review: Hibiki 響 12 Years Old

Style: Fruity and Grainy

Nose:

Crisp red apples immersed into honey toffee. Coconut cream gradually drawn into the core. Cranberries brimming positively, then comes a whiff of barley grains. Dry grass, even a touch of nutmeg at the tail. Simple, calm fruity tone. Pretty neat.

Palate:

Red and green apples lightly coated with golden syrup. Red fruits beginning to surface, cranberries and pears infused with brittle barley husks, cinnamon dust and subtle cloves. Milk chocolate smoothie, sweet fruitiness sitting pretty at the middle, while dry chalky notes emerging at the back. Tannic oak sinks in, malt and peppermint fizzing gently to finish.

Finish:

Soft red fruits, apple slices and cranberry cream gathering momentum at the very end. Barley and oak lightly dipped in honey water.

Thoughts:

It feels all Hibiki follows a similar recipe, but because of its age, it delivers a brighter vibe. Clean, simple structure with multiple elements – whether it be the sherry (or plum?) malt, grain, or I suspect, Mizunara, each element playing a distinct part to contribute to the expression. Well, the bitterness lingers a bit too long and too much for my liking, but all in all, it is a simple, positive dram we have here.

✓ [Recommended if you like the style/ distillery]

[43% • Blended Japanese Whisky • General Release • Circa 2014 Bottled • Discontinued • t]

-Esmond