The Southside Whisky Club  

Yoichi 10yo | 45.0% | Japan
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Meet #37   |   13/04/13   |   Hosted by Phil
It was time for a Japanese whisky night, with 6 bottles to get through (one we'd tasted before).. we got our heads down and achieved our goals, sampling some interesting delights from far afield.
Other bottles sampled:
#68 Nikka Coffey Grain | SSWC review 37b
#69 Karuizawa Asama | SSWC review 37c
#70 Hakushu 12yo | SSWC review 37d
#71 Yamazaki 18yo | SSWC review 37e

Japanese Whisky Club   Bottles #33a - #33e were all tasted as part of a Japanese whisky night, where we tasted 6 bottles (one was a control, the previously-tried Nikka 'From The Barrel'). The image to the right shows the distilleries we tasted bottles from, as well as when they came into existence and who owns them (with 'S' denoting a now-silent still).

There were various stages of building a wooden bath-house represented on the nose: from French polish to pine smoke, a lump of coal and the smell of the inside of a sauna. Once in the warm, steamy bath, why not add some scent with geraniums, cherry, apple or plum? It would seem an awful shame to be bathing without some tasty treats to nibble on, wouldn't it? Then reach over and feast your eyes on a plate of marzipan, chocolate, caramel, baklava with extra honey and some (vanilla) fudge.. But, oh no! What's this? It's only Inappropriate Culturally-mis-matching Pudding Man! "I see you're enjoying a nice Japanese bath! Here, have some crème caramel and Christmas pudding, you idiot!". He then faded into the steamy evening, with only the slowly receding clip-clopping of clogs to remind you of his untimely interruption.
In one of the most interesting tasting lists we've had yet, this Yoichi managed to evoke Bonjela, amalgam, Atomic Fireballs, Jägermeister, black bean sauce, garam masala, rubber and tin! Lime got mentioned a couple of times, as did liquorice, whilst grape and grapefruit are also allowed into this list we shall call "vaguely fruity things..". Then some coffee, nutmeg, cloves and chili water made up a separate category known as "things that are spices, spicy or coffee". And that's it! Except we forgot peanut. And maple & pecan tart. NUTS.

  Being the most northerly of Japan's distilleries, Yoichi has the most Scottish climate.
Finish & Comments
Short, medium and long were all suggested for the finish, with 7 out of 10 feeling it was long - a mean score would perhaps be medium-long. And it wasn't just long in places; it was Shane Long and Jeannie Longo. The tastes on the finish were an impressively mixed bag, ranging from porridge to heartburn. Cayenne pepper, TCP, cinnamon, blackcurrant and liquorice sweets and coriander were also towards one end of that scale, whilst soda bread stuck up for the porridge end. Coffee and a honey spirit (like mead, but stronger) sat somewhere in the middle, like they would.
~£55 (70cl)
Useful Links
Whisky for Everyone: Yoichi distillery   |
We've always scored out of 10 in our group (see number in red box, below), with scores regularly given across that spectrum. The value out of 100 below is adjusted to the scale most commonly used for whisky reviews, to allow for better comparison.

80 / 100

Average score

Detailed scores (out of 10)
Ali: 7
Cath: 6.5
Fran: 6.5
Hamish: 5.8
Jamie: 7
Laura: 6
Liz: 6.8
Martin: 7.2
Phil: 7.3
Shelley: 6.8
Simon C: 7.5
Tasting Game Points (out of 6)
Ali: 1.75
Cath: 2.25
Fran: 2
Hamish: 0.25
Jamie: 0
Laura: 2.25
Liz: 1.25
Martin: 1.75
Phil: N/A
Shelley: 0
Simon C: 0.25


[ for other thoughts on whisky and more in-depth activities of the group, check out whisky on meiotic ]