Bought: Amazon, 30th December 2014
90-92/100 – Whisky Bible 2015
81.23/100 – Whiskybase (average from 148 member votes)
Amazon got me again with another great discount in a “Daily Deal”. This Japanese vatted malt comes in 3 different colours: white, red and black. Both the red and the black are based purely on Japanese whiskies but the white includes an element of Islay. What exactly this means is a bit of a mystery, along with the Islay distillery adding the influence. But ‘guesswork’ is part of the fun in the world of whisky, or do I mean ‘frustration’? Curiously Phil of Whisky Wednesday says in his video below that the peat in the White Label comes from the Japanese brands of Yoichi and Miyagikyo, which isn’t what my initial research revealed. Perhaps my initial source was simply hinting at the peat connection with Islay but the White Label is 100% Japanese whisky.
There are 3 different versions of the white label in the Whisky Bible 2015 scoring 90/100, 91/100 and 92/100. Each has a different batch number that sadly doesn’t match anything printed on mine. Jim Murray, the bible author, includes remarks in his reviews of “big peaty number”, “real class” and “peculiarly Japanese feel to this delicately peated delight”. So, depending on the blend, I could either have a “big peaty number” or a “delicately peated delight” or something in between. Whichever it is, anything scoring between 90-93.5/100 is considered “brilliant” in the bible.
Scoring over 81/100 on Whiskybase is very good with comments of “I found this a very friendly whiskey, fit for most occasions” and “not bad, the peat profile was very present but subtle”.
Here’s Whisky Wednesday with their thoughts about the Nikka White Label, which they score 8/10 (YouTube May 2017):