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A corn-forward Whisky from Japan aged in ex-Bourbon casks for a Bourbon-inspired profile.
The Hombo family has been creating Wines and Spirits in Japan for more than 100 years. They added Whisky to their products in 1949. In 1984 they wanted to move the distilling operation to a cooler climate, so they closed their distillery in Kagoshima and built a new one high in the mountains of Nagano at an altitude of more than 2600 feet — the Mars Shinshu Distillery. But a few mishaps caused them to cease production in 1992. It opened again in 2011, and new stills were acquired in 2014. But their warehouse still contains hundreds of casks stretching back thirty years. Now at full production strength, this small distillery produces a range of sweet and peated Whiskies.
Mars Iwai Blue Label Whisky is a "Bourbon-inspired" dram. The mash bill is approximately 75% corn and 25% malted barley to facilitate fermentation and open up the floral aromatics. The Spirit is aged in ex-Bourbon casks as well, lending even more Bourbon flavors to each sip. The resulting Spirit is bottle in a double-hopped bottle at 40% ABV.
The Iwai line of Whiskies is named after Kiichiro Iwai. Although not famous in the West, Iwai is known as the "Silent Pioneer of Japanese Whisky" who mentored Masataka Taketsuru — founder of Nikka and Suntory.
Appearance / Color
Nose / Aroma / Smell
On the nose you’ll find carnations and orchard fruits in addition to vanilla and caramel notes.
Flavor / Taste / Palate
The palate opens with menthol and vanilla extract over notes of wet oak, bitter orange, and burnt demerara sugar.
The finish is medium-length with a lingering heat.
The Flavor Spiral™ shows the most common flavors that you'll taste in Mars Iwai Blue Label Whisky and gives you a chance to have a taste of it before actually tasting it.
We invented Flavor Spiral™ here at Flaviar to get all your senses involved in tasting drinks and, frankly, because we think that classic tasting notes are boring.