[Review] Single Malt Miyagikyo

This “Single Malt Miyagikyo” was created by Masataka Taketsuru, the father of Japanese whiskey, to realize his own dream of the future.
It was released on September 1, 2015. The whisky is distilled slowly by steam indirect distillation, using pipes inside the pot still and passing steam at about 130℃.

1. Manufacturer

Nikka Whisky Co.

Establishment1934
Head office4-31, Minami-Aoyama 5-chome, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-8616, Japan
Owned distilleriesYoichi Distillery, Miyagikyo Distillery, Ben Nevis Distillery

2. Distillery

Miyagikyo Distillery

Address 1, Nikka, Aoba-ku, Sendai City, Miyagi Prefecture 989-3433, Japan
Start of operation 1969

It has been about 30 years since the first distillery was started in Yoichi, Hokkaido. Masataka Taketsuru, who believed that “whisky becomes richer and more flavorful when it is blended with raw materials from different distilleries” desperately needed a second distillery. Taketsuru chose Miyagi Gorge in Sendai, Miyagi Prefecture. It is a lush green gorge blessed with two clear streams, the Hirose River and the Shin River. When Taketsuru visited this place for the first time, he drank some of his Black Nikka in the clear water of the Shin River and confirmed the taste. It is said that he decided to build the distillery on the spot. The pride of the Miyagi Gorge Distillery is its café-style continuous distiller. At the time of its introduction, this distiller was already considered obsolete. Because it was an old-fashioned distillation machine, it was prone to leaving behind miscellaneous flavors, but Taketsuru chose to use this old-fashioned distillation machine because the technology could transform them into the original aroma and sweetness of the ingredients. At the Miyagikyo Distillery, people who have inherited Taketsuru’s passion are still continuing to make various attempts to make whisky taste better.

 

Image credit: Miyagikyo Distillery|NIKKA WHISKY

For more information on Miyagikyo Distillery, please see also this article.

3. Product name and photo

Single Malt Miyagikyo 

4. Features

Deeper, more gorgeous and lighter.

A gentle steam distillation and a pot still structure that does not leave a heavy component in the original spirit. The addition of sherry malt and new oak malt to the gorgeous, fruity malt produced by this distillation method gives the malt a light, yet deep and rich flavor. In addition, the lightly peaty malt gives a mildly peaty aftertaste. The taste is clean, refined and crisp, yet sweet. The Single Malt Miyagikyo has a soft and delicate taste reminiscent of lowland malt. It is an elegant single malt with a sweet, aged aroma of vanilla and a fruity, sweet-sour quality reminiscent of bananas and apples.

4-1. Tasting Notes

NoseFruity aroma of apples and pears, with sweet and gorgeous floral notes. Soft vanilla aroma from the barrel.
TasteSweet like dried fruits, smooth mouthfeel.
AftertasteSweetness of barley, with a hint of bitterness. Gentle oak aroma spreads gently.

4-2. Product Specifications

Alcohol content45%
alcohol categorySingle malt whisky
Barrel type
Contents700ml
Number of bottles sold
Suggested retail price4,620 yen (tax included)
Release dateSeptember 1, 2015

5. Awards

No awards have been received at this time.

6. Price

6-1 Manufacturer’s suggested retail price

Product name Single Malt Miyagikyo
Volume700ml
Suggested retail priceTax included: 4,620 yen

6-2. Resale price on Mercari

The resale price on Mercari is Around 4,000 yen to 5,000 yen The resale price on Mercari is as follows. (*as of April 5, 2021)

6-3. Yahoo auction bidding price

The winning bid price on Yahoo Auction is Lowest bidder: 2,800 yen, highest bidder: 5,000 yen, average bidder: 3,743 yen (*Statistics for the past 120 days as of April 5, 2021)

6-4. Rakuten, Yahoo Shopping, Amazon

It is also sold on mail order sites at Around 4,000 yen to 5,000 yen (*As of April 5, 2021)

6-5. Price offered at BAR Shinkai

At “BAR SHINKAI” , which is operated by this website, it is 1 cup, 45 ml: 1,540 yen It is available at

7. Summary

To enjoy the character of single malt Miyagikyo, drink it on the rocks or with a little water. It has a beautiful, fruity aroma, smooth mouthfeel, and sweet taste.
For a sharp, crisp taste, try a highball. The slight peaty aftertaste makes it easy to drink, but also gives a sense of satisfaction. This is a good entry level malt for those who don’t like single malts because of their peculiarities.

Please check out the other articles about Miyagikyo.

Lastly: Recommended Books on Japanese Whisky

If you want to learn more about Japanese whisky, which is a global trend, we highly recommend these books.

(1).Whisky Galore Vol.29 December 2021 issue

In the December 2021 issue of Whisky Galore, published by the Whisky Culture Research Institute, we report on 11 Japanese craft distilleries, including some that are open to the public for the first time, under the title of “Japanese Whisky Craft Frontline,” the first of three consecutive issues. Why did the popularity of Japanese whiskey and the craft boom occur? We will examine with interviews. Chichibu Distillery / Chichibu No.2 Distillery / Mars Shinshu Distillery / Mars Tsunuki Distillery / Kanosuke Distillery / Hioki Distillery / Ontake Distillery / Osuzuyama Distillery / Kaikyo Distillery / Hanyu Distillery / Konosu Distillery

created by Rinker
¥1,320
(2022/09/25 13:57:54時点 Amazon調べ-詳細)

(2). Japanese Whisky as an Education for Business

This is a book written by Mamoru Tsuchiya, a world-famous whisky critic and representative of the Whisky Culture Research Institute, titled “Japanese Whisky as a Culture that Works for Business” .
The book covers the basics of whisky, the introduction of whisky to Japan, the birth of Japanese whisky, advertising strategies and the rise of Japanese whisky, and the current rise of craft distilleries. This is a book that summarizes Japanese whisky in a very easy to understand way.

(3). Whisky and I (Masataka Taketsuru)

Masataka Taketsuru, the founder of Nikka Whisky, devoted his life to brewing whisky in Japan. This is a revised and reprinted version of the autobiography of a man who simply loved whiskey and talked about himself. The book vividly depicts the days when he went to Scotland alone to study as a young man and overcame many hardships to complete Japanese whisky, as well as his companion, Rita.

created by Rinker
¥1,051
(2022/09/25 11:13:35時点 Amazon調べ-詳細)

(4). A Letter of Challenge from a New Generation Distillery

Launching in 2019. With the world experiencing an unprecedented whisky boom, what were the managers of craft distilleries thinking and what were their thoughts as they took on the challenge of making whiskey? This book tells the stories of 13 craft distillery owners, including Ichiro Hido of Venture Whisky, famous for his Ichirose Malt, who inspired the birth of craft distilleries in Japan.

created by Rinker
repicbook(リピックブック)株式会社
¥1,870
(2022/09/25 13:28:40時点 Amazon調べ-詳細)

(5). Whiskey Rising

This is the Japanese version of Whisky Risng, published in the US in 2016, with much updated content. Not only does it describe the history of Japanese whiskey in detail, but it also includes data on all the distilleries in Japan, including the craft distilleries that have been founded in recent years. The book also includes descriptions of the legendary bottles that have been released, as well as information on bars where Japanese whisky can be found.

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