Bourbon Whiskey

The iconic, American spirit
Sophisticated spice and punchy peppar
Bourbon’s sweeter sibling
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NIKKA

Black Clear Blended Japanese Whisky 700ml

This is Black Clear, a rather confusingly named whisky from Nikka’s blended side. It’s especially puzzling because it’s neither black nor clear, but rather a fairly normal (if slightly pale) whisky colour. The ‘clear’ in the name actually refers to the fact that this was the first Japanese whisky to use entirely unpeated malt. The aroma is enticing – clean, bright with a pure ethanol punch and a slight backdrop of honey sweetness. There is something about the smell that puts me in mind of a distillery – that raw, untamed alcohol. Watered, the sweetness is unsurprisingly lost and it becomes rather one dimensional and alcohol-led. In the mouth, it’s a little rough around the edges – a sweet start that slowly yields to a raw grain alcohol harshness, along with an unexpectedly strong alcohol heat given its low 37% ABV strength. The finish is short but nicely peppery and leaves you reaching for another sip.

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