Miyagikyo & Yoichi Sherry Casks, New American Oak, Bourbon Cask, Refill Cask
From a sample in a long-running swap with a friend. It's one of his favorites, and I've yet to try this whisky (or perhaps investment piece, given the price curve). It's a blended malt from Yoichi and Miyagikyo, named after Nikkas's founder Masataka Taketsuru.
Wood with a fresh coat of lacquer. Fruity, but neither crisp and youthful nor dried and deep fruits. Tropical, perhaps! Bits of vanilla and malt. I like the nose very much, it has a little of everything and packs quite a bit of richness.
Malty, waxy and fragrant with clear perfume-y hints arriving at the roof of the mouth. Not very intense. Herbal and a very small piece of fresh fruit.
Suddenly - rich sherried/winey flavors and a little bitterness in a short-to-medium length finish. Nothing to write home about.
Great nose and an overall tasty whisky, although nothing remarkably super special about it. There are lots of equally tasty, mellow and balanced malt whiskies for a quarter or less of the price, and for me the choice would be very easy! This has won awards for "the world's best blended malt", but one should keep in mind that a blended malt is nothing magical or inherently different from a single malt whisky, it's just that the casks come from different distilleries. I don't think this one deserves much special treatment, but scoring is always separate from pricing. This is after all good, no question about it.
80 / 100