Updated: Apr 3, 2021
International Whiskey Thursday
Distillery: Nikka Whiskey Distilling Co.
BACKGROUND: Nikka distillery was first opened in 1934 on the island of Hokkaido by Masataka, also known as the father of Japanese whiskey. The whiskey was made following the same rules as pure irish whiskey which is Be made from a mash of malted barley, plus other cereal grains (optional); Be mashed, fermented, distilled to no more than 94.8% ABV, and matured in wooden casks, such as oak, not exceeding 700 liters for a minimum of three years in the Republic of Ireland and/or Northern Ireland; Not contain additives other than water and caramel coloring; Retain the characteristics of its raw materials (in other words, smell and taste like whiskey); and Be bottled at no less than 40% ABV. Nikka Days whiskey was released in 2018, with a blend of grain and malt. The new blend consisted of “Coffey Grain Whiskey,” or Yoichi malts and non-peated Miyago malts. Nikka Day is the third blended expression from the Nikka line.
NOSE: Malt notes dominate Nikka Days with some light scents peat, apple, pear, and vanilla backing it up. It is quite light and smooth with a nose profile very consistent with Irish Whiskey. (21/25)
PALATE: Attributable to it's low proof, Nikka Days goes down very smooth! It is light and refreshing with a slight peppery spice note to it. The flavor profile is mostly vanilla, butterscotch, malt, peat, all spice, and black pepper. It has a watery feel to it and a thinness to it but the pepper adds a nice bite to it. The flavor profile reminds me of an Irish whiskey blended with a young rye whiskey. (33/40)
FINISH: The finish is medium in length with dominate notes of malt, peat, pepper, and some burnt butterscotch. Although it is medium in length it is quite light. (21/25)
VALUE: Nikka Days has an SRP of $44 which is a great price for this tasty Japanese Whiskey when other Japanese Whiskies have sky rocketed in price. (8/10)
FINAL THOUGHTS: Nikka Days is a very good, easy dipping Japanese Whiskey with sprite peppery notes and a nice sweet malty-ness and peaty-ness. This is one of the first Japanese Whiskeys we ever tried and it got us into it. We recommend this to anyone who wants to try Japanese Whiskeys at a great price.
Similar & Slightly Better Whiskey: Green Spot
Similar & Equal Whiskey: Hibiki Suntory Whiskey
Similar & Slightly Worse Whiskey: Suntory Whiskey Toki
Tell us what you think and give us some feedback!
96-100: The perfect dram, juice of the gods
90-95: Near perfect, truly incredible whiskey
85-89: Amazing whiskey, will always try to keep a backup bottle of this
80-84: Very good, some minor flaws here or there
75-79: Good, quite enjoyable to drink, Will try and keep a bottle on the shelf
70-74: Solid, wouldn’t go out of my way to get this
60-69: Decent, would offer this up to non whiskey drinkers
50-59: Not my cup of tea
Below 50: Give away