We are going back to Japan with this Kamiki and just like the Ichiro’s Malt & Grain that I recently reviewed, this is also a world blended malt. So it doesn’t just contain Japanese whisky but also whisky sourced from other parts of the world.
Kamiki is not a distillery but buys its whisky elsewhere. However, it is not known from which distilleries the whisky comes from or which type of casks were used. But what we do know is that the people behind Kamiki do dare to experiment, since this blend is finished in Japanese cedarwood. That is quite unique and as far as I can trace back it’s also the first to use this type of wood.
The Japanese Cedar tree, also known as Sugi, is Japan’s national tree and was often planted around temples and shrines. The timber is commonly used for making tubs, staves and casks and also for interior designs. It has a wonderful scent that works well with scented candles, but will this work for whisky too?
This Kamiki is bottled at 48% ABV.
Kamiki tasting notes:
Nose: ooff immediately a strong scent from that cedarwood, mixed with a handful of spices, such as cloves, black pepper and cumin seed. Resin too. At first, the cedar wood is quite dominant, fortunately, it fades after a while. Then it becomes slightly creamier. Vanilla, caramel and red apples. A hint of lemons in the back. Some coconut. And a faint, slightly perfumy floral note. But after that, the wood scent is starting to come back.
Taste: still the same wood flavours as in the nose, but slightly less. Luckily I also get a little bit of honey here. Later I also get vanilla. A floral note and sweet cherries in the back. Then liquorice and cayenne pepper. After a while, it gets sweeter. More honey and an almost sugary note. Sugar water? Some toffee, chocolate and salted caramel too.
Finish: mid-long with again the cedarwood and those same spices. Resin too.
I don’t know what to think about this as I have never tasted something like this before. It is mainly wood and wood spices. Quite an unusual dram because of the cedarwood. After a while, it does settle a bit and there will appear other flavours as well, but the cedar finish continues to bother me, unfortunately. If you are open to something unique then this is definitely worth a try, but it is not for me.
Bottle provided by Kamiki.