Yamazaki 1984 Vintage, 48%

Price: $600 Issue: Winter 2009 Reviewer: John Hansell

The first vintage Suntory Yamazaki offered in the U.S. A portion of this whisky is aged in Japanese oak. Heavy aroma, with lush sherried fruit and deep juicy oak, marrying with firmly dry and spicy oak resin (the Japanese oak influence is obvious). This same profile follows through on the palate: ripe berried fruit, raisin, blackberry jam, plum spiced with cinnamon, vanilla spearmint, roasted nuts and gripping leather. All this, lying on a bed of molasses and toffee. The Japanese oak really kicks in on the invigoratingly spicy, warm, resinous finish. Quite elderly in nature, but remains very exciting and dynamic, even with all the oak.