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Nikka unveils apple brandy cask-finished single malts

Japanese whisky Nikka has released two limited edition single malts finished in apple brandy casks to commemorate the marriage of its founders 100 years ago.

Yoichi and Miyagikyo have both been finished in apple brandy casks

Nikka has released Yoichi Apple Brandy Finish and Miyagikyo Apple Brandy Finish, which have both spent six months in apple brandy casks. The brandy casks provide the whiskies with “rich and deep fruity characteristics”.

On the nose, Miyagikyo has notes of apple, vanilla, honey, sage and verbena, while the palate is “creamy and lively with freshness” with notes of acacia honey.

Yoichi begins with a nose of apples straight from the oven, with peatiness taking over. The palate is fruity with hints of candied apple and pear and a slight peatiness.

Both single malts carry an ABV of 47% and were bottled in 2020.

The commemorative single malts celebrate the 100th wedding anniversary of Masataka Takesturu and Jessie Roberta (Rita) Cowan, who married in Glasgow on 8 January 1920. The couple had met less than a year prior to the wedding.

Several years after the wedding, the couple moved to Japan and founded Nikka in 1934. The husband-and-wife team have since become known as the mother and father of Japanese whisky.

The apple is said to be a very strong symbol for Nikka as Masataka started a business making apple juice and jam from local Hokkaido apples while they waited for the site’s first whiskies to mature.

Miyagikyo Apple Brandy Finish Single Malt and Yoichi Apple Brandy Finish Single Malt are priced at RRP £195 (US$248) each per 700ml bottle. There are only a limited number of bottles of each whisky available globally.

The whiskies will be available to buy in the UK from select retailers, including Master of Malt, The Whisky Exchange, Milroy’s of Soho, Nickolls & Perks and Hard to Find Whisky.

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