Hibiki - Master's Select Japanese Harmony' Blended Whisky

$310.00
Sale price

Regular price $310.00

Launched in March 2015, this is yet another addition to Suntory's sought after "Hibiki" series. More exclusive than the standard Harmony bottling, it is the first Hibiki created for the global duty free market. A blend of more than ten malt and grain whiskies which are aged in five different types of casks from the Yamazaki, Hakushu and Chita distilleries, Suntory chief blender Shinji Fukuyo was involved in its creation, while production is overseen by the third generation master blender and great-grandson of Suntory founder, Shingo Torii. Beautifully presented in the brand's trademark 24-faceted bottle representing the Japanese seasons. 

Tasting note: Bright brass colour shows impeccable purity. Initial pass finds subdued, resinous, woody aromas. Remains frustratingly shy over five to six minutes. Extended air contact finally amplifies the bouquet beyond mediocre, releasing attractive fragrances of dusty cocoa, dates, oak shavings, cinnamon and pepper. 

Light entry. Medium bodied mid palate expands the flavour range with dried fruits, hazelnut, light cocoa and peppery warmth. 

Finish finds wood spice and wood shavings followed by a subtle vanilla and honey undercurrent carrying the aftertaste. Improves over time, ending up richer and more robust than most Japanese blends at its level. 

43% Alc./Vol.

 --------THE PRODUCER--------

Suntory - Hakushu Distillery

In 1972, Keizo Saji—Suntory's second Master Blender—took a momentous step forward in pursuing Shinjiro Torii’s vision for diverse and truly Japanese whiskies blessed with the riches of Japanese nature and craftsmanship. On the misty, calm shores of Chita Peninsula, Keizo built a distillery dedicated to creating the highest-quality Japanese grain whisky.

The best place to start when you are pairing food and wine is to think about the structural elements of both the food and wines. These elements are: sweetness, acidity, bitterness, umami, chilli heat and fat.

We have listed these elements in foods and how you can add wines with similar or contrasting elements to help create harmony in your matches.

Sweetness 

Sweet foods can overpower dry wines, white or red, making them appear acidic, neutral or bitter. In order to reduce this effect you should pair sweet foods with sweet wines. 

Acidity

Acidic foods, like fresh citrus, tomatoes or salads laden with vinaigrettes, will overpower the acidity in a wine making them appear flabby or less acidic than they were. In order to reduce this effect you should pair acidic foods with wines that have a higher acidity such as Champagne, Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.

Acidity is a key element in creating balance in a dish or a food-and-wine match. If the foods are going to reduce the acidity in the wines then you need to add your own bit of acidity by bringing a more acidic wine to the table. It is the same principle behind adding lemon juice to seafood dishes, as seafood tends to have quite low natural acidity.

Bitterness

If a food is high in bitterness then it will make the wine appear bitter, or it will increase the perception of bitterness (tannins) in the wine. In order to reduce this effect you should pair bitter foods with wines that are not lean with high acid.  Rather choose wines with some sweetness, fruit or viscosity.

Umami (Savoury)

Foods that are highly savoury, like mushrooms, will increase the bitterness or acidic perception we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair umami rich foods with wines that are fruity and do not have medium-high tannins. 

Often foods that are more savoury are best matched with white wines like Chardonnay or Soave as these do not big tannins but have lots of fruity flavours.

Chilli Heat

Chilli heat is similar to umami-rich foods.  They will increase the bitterness or acidic perception as well as the alcoholic burn we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair chilli heat rich foods with wines that are fruity and/or have higher sweetness levels.

Wines that are off-dry like many Gewürztraminers or Rieslings could work best with chilli foods like a curry as they will be both a bit sweet but also very fruity. If you aren't a white wine drinker then you could consider red wines that have lower tannins such as a Pinot Noir or Gamay Noir. 

Fatty

Foods that are high in fat will make the wines feel flabby and less fruity. In order to reduce this effect you should pair fatty foods with wines that have high acidity. This is similar to the rule of adding in acidity (in the form of citrus) to seafood to help to cut down the perception of fattiness.  

These suggestions (there are no rules that apply to everyone) will help you to think about how to create pairings. It often isn't helpful to think about 'red wine and red meat' or 'white wine and fish' because it is actually the structural elements of the wine and food that need to be balanced. It is the acidity in white wines that works well by cutting through the fattiness of a piece of fish but you could get that acidity in a Pinot Noir. 

Launched in March 2015, this is yet another addition to Suntory's sought after "Hibiki" series. More exclusive than the standard Harmony bottling, it is the first Hibiki created for the global duty free market. A blend of more than ten malt and grain whiskies which are aged in five different types of casks from the Yamazaki, Hakushu and Chita distilleries, Suntory chief blender Shinji Fukuyo was involved in its creation, while production is overseen by the third generation master blender and great-grandson of Suntory founder, Shingo Torii. Beautifully presented in the brand's trademark 24-faceted bottle representing the Japanese seasons. 

Tasting note: Bright brass colour shows impeccable purity. Initial pass finds subdued, resinous, woody aromas. Remains frustratingly shy over five to six minutes. Extended air contact finally amplifies the bouquet beyond mediocre, releasing attractive fragrances of dusty cocoa, dates, oak shavings, cinnamon and pepper. 

Light entry. Medium bodied mid palate expands the flavour range with dried fruits, hazelnut, light cocoa and peppery warmth. 

Finish finds wood spice and wood shavings followed by a subtle vanilla and honey undercurrent carrying the aftertaste. Improves over time, ending up richer and more robust than most Japanese blends at its level. 

43% Alc./Vol.

 --------THE PRODUCER--------

Suntory - Hakushu Distillery

In 1972, Keizo Saji—Suntory's second Master Blender—took a momentous step forward in pursuing Shinjiro Torii’s vision for diverse and truly Japanese whiskies blessed with the riches of Japanese nature and craftsmanship. On the misty, calm shores of Chita Peninsula, Keizo built a distillery dedicated to creating the highest-quality Japanese grain whisky.

The best place to start when you are pairing food and wine is to think about the structural elements of both the food and wines. These elements are: sweetness, acidity, bitterness, umami, chilli heat and fat.

We have listed these elements in foods and how you can add wines with similar or contrasting elements to help create harmony in your matches.

Sweetness 

Sweet foods can overpower dry wines, white or red, making them appear acidic, neutral or bitter. In order to reduce this effect you should pair sweet foods with sweet wines. 

Acidity

Acidic foods, like fresh citrus, tomatoes or salads laden with vinaigrettes, will overpower the acidity in a wine making them appear flabby or less acidic than they were. In order to reduce this effect you should pair acidic foods with wines that have a higher acidity such as Champagne, Riesling or Sauvignon Blanc.

Acidity is a key element in creating balance in a dish or a food-and-wine match. If the foods are going to reduce the acidity in the wines then you need to add your own bit of acidity by bringing a more acidic wine to the table. It is the same principle behind adding lemon juice to seafood dishes, as seafood tends to have quite low natural acidity.

Bitterness

If a food is high in bitterness then it will make the wine appear bitter, or it will increase the perception of bitterness (tannins) in the wine. In order to reduce this effect you should pair bitter foods with wines that are not lean with high acid.  Rather choose wines with some sweetness, fruit or viscosity.

Umami (Savoury)

Foods that are highly savoury, like mushrooms, will increase the bitterness or acidic perception we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair umami rich foods with wines that are fruity and do not have medium-high tannins. 

Often foods that are more savoury are best matched with white wines like Chardonnay or Soave as these do not big tannins but have lots of fruity flavours.

Chilli Heat

Chilli heat is similar to umami-rich foods.  They will increase the bitterness or acidic perception as well as the alcoholic burn we have in wines. In order to reduce this effect you should pair chilli heat rich foods with wines that are fruity and/or have higher sweetness levels.

Wines that are off-dry like many Gewürztraminers or Rieslings could work best with chilli foods like a curry as they will be both a bit sweet but also very fruity. If you aren't a white wine drinker then you could consider red wines that have lower tannins such as a Pinot Noir or Gamay Noir. 

Fatty

Foods that are high in fat will make the wines feel flabby and less fruity. In order to reduce this effect you should pair fatty foods with wines that have high acidity. This is similar to the rule of adding in acidity (in the form of citrus) to seafood to help to cut down the perception of fattiness.  

These suggestions (there are no rules that apply to everyone) will help you to think about how to create pairings. It often isn't helpful to think about 'red wine and red meat' or 'white wine and fish' because it is actually the structural elements of the wine and food that need to be balanced. It is the acidity in white wines that works well by cutting through the fattiness of a piece of fish but you could get that acidity in a Pinot Noir.