A Karuizawa from the distillery’s last two years, 1999 and 2000, matured in European oak sherry casks and bottled in 2012. Other versions at various ABVs e…More info
A Karuizawa from the distillery’s last two years, 1999 and 2000, matured in European oak sherry casks and bottled in 2012. Other versions at various ABVs exist of Asama, which was named after Mount Asama, a volcano near the distillery.
Japan, Nagano. Distillery closed and dismantled.
Mothballed in the early 2000s, Karuizawa closed definitively in Spring 2012. Located at the foot of one of Japan's most active volcanoes, Mont Asama, Karuizawa began distilling in 1956. Equipped with small direct coal-fired stills, Karuizawa produced a robust, full-bodied malt that took perfectly to long maturation in ex-sherry casks from Spain (first fill) and Scotland (second fill, such as Mortlach). Karuizawa was a malt distilled to produce the Ocean blends of the Daikoku group. Bottlings of single malts were at the time reserved for the distillery's visitor centre and a handful of private clients. These hand-bottled versions were offered as cask strength, single cask vintages. Only what was needed for the bottling was removed from the cask, with the rest left to continue ageing in barrel. This practice explains why the same barrel can exist in various bottlings of different ages and versions. This means that the 1970 cask #6177 exists under two labels, one a 31 Year Old Distillery Edition (2002) and the other a 42 Year Old Vintage Single Cask Edition (2012). It was under the aegis of Number One Drinks, who bought the 300 or so barrels still available at the distillery in 2006, that Karuizawa joined the ranks of legend.
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