Glendalough Distillery has unveiled a 7-year-old Irish single malt whiskey aged in very rare Japanese Mizunara casks sourced from the island of Hokkaido, Japan. A search for the most flavorful oak in the world took the distillery from their own wooded mountains in Wicklow to those in the volcanic north of Japan. This is where they found Mizunara, the most sought-after oak in the whiskey world.
Mizunara’s rarity makes sourcing a great undertaking. The trunks of these uniquely beautiful trees are prone to growing twisted, and they must grow to be twice the age of most oak trees before they can be felled. It then takes three years to dry, and even then, is notoriously difficult to cooper due to its porousness. However, therein lies its saving grace: whiskey can seep deeper into the wood, resulting in an alluring, exotic flavor.
On the nose, the whiskey is vibrant, fruity, and floral. The palate is luxuriously smooth with notes of dark chocolate orange, sandalwood, and cinnamon, flavors synonymous with Mizunara whiskeys. The spirit benefits from an exceptionally long finish of toasted oak and subtle layers of complex, woody spices, with the dark chocolate lingering even longer.
“Every whiskey has a story, this one has an epic adventure, worthy of being told over a glass. This whiskey came from a relentless search for the best oak on earth,” said Gary McLoughlin, Founder & Marketing Director of Glendalough. “By ‘best’ I suppose we mean most flavorful. What started in the wooded mountains around our distillery eventually led us to the snowy north of Japan, where we somehow managed to get our hands on Mizunara. As the first Irish distillery ever to use this almost mythical species of oak we had really ventured into the unknown.”
On the bottle you’ll find a little red thread – the Japanese call it the “red thread of fate.” This particular one represents a connection between the wooded Wicklow mountains, and those of Hokkaido and the fateful union of some of the world’s best malt and what they maintain is the world’s most flavorful oak.
Bottled at 46% ABV, Glendalough 7-Year-Old Single Malt Mizunara Finish is priced at $99.99 and will be madeavailable beginning February 28 in limited quantities nationwide.
For more information on Glendalough’s entire portfolio, head over to their official website.