Hanyu Ace of Clubs 2000, 59.4%

Price: $94.00 Issue: Summer 2013 Reviewer: Dave Broom

Ichiro loves Japanese oak (mizunara) and here's a finished example. You need water, however, to be able to discern those characteristic incense notes. Without it, you're in a world of vanilla and resin. The neat palate is hot but firm, with some red fruits and an allspice note. Water is needed, and does allow a fresh acidity to come through on the finish; sadly it also adds tannic bitterness. A tricky balancing act. ¥9,000