[Review] Single Malt Kanosuke Artist Edition #002

Whisky Review
Whisky Review
Kanosuke Distillery

The Kanosuke Artist Edition is inspired by the “Wuxing“, which is deeply rooted in Japanese people’s lives, and was created by an artist active in various fields who designed an original label based on the concept of the five elements: “tree, fire, earth, metal, and water”.

The motif of the first edition was “Tree”, but this year is the second edition and the motif is “Fire”. 2019 distilled non-piped malt. Single malt Japanese whisky selected from a few casks aged for more than 3 years in Pedro Ximenez sherry butts.


1. Manufacturer

Kanosuke Komasa Distillery Co.

EstablishedAugust 2021
Head office location845-3 Kaminokawa, Hiyoshi-cho, Hioki-shi, Kagoshima 899-2421
Owned distilleryKanosuke Distillery

2. Distillery

Kanosuke Distillery

Location 845-3, Gannokawa, Hiyoshi-cho, Hioki-shi, Kagoshima 899-2421
Start of operation 2017

The Kanosuke Distillery stands on a site of about 9,000 m2 along Fukiage beach on the west coast of Kagoshima Prefecture.
The U-shaped, two-story main building houses not only the distilling facilities but also a bar with a great view and a store selling original goods.
The main feature of the distillery is that it is equipped with three pot stills (large, medium, and small). Each has a capacity of 6,000 liters, 3,000 liters, and 1,600 liters, respectively.

Craft distilleries (small distilleries) around the world generally have two stills. Whisky is usually distilled twice, and by using pot stills with different shapes of necks and angles of line arms at the top during the second distillation (redistillation), the aroma and flavor of the original whiskey can be changed more richly.
Fukiage beach, where the distillery is located, is one of the “Three Great Sand Dunes of Japan” and has been selected as one of the “100 Best Sandy Beaches in Japan”. The beach stretches about 47 km from north to south, and strong winds blow in from the sea surface, shrouding the area around the distillery in a white mist of fine droplets from the sea. It is hot in the summer and cold in the winter, with temperatures near zero degrees Celsius, and snow flurries are not uncommon.

For more information on the Kanosuke Distillery, see also this article.


3. Product name and photo

Single Malt Kanosuke Artist Edition#002
Single Malt Kanosuke Artist Edition#002

嘉之助蒸溜所 シングルモルト 嘉之助 アーティストエディション#002 50% 700ml 箱付き /Kanosuke Single Malt Artist Edition #002 700ml

4. Characteristics

We have carefully selected a few casks from the Pedro Ximenez sherry butts that have matured with the sea roar as a lullaby in the aging cellar on a small hill on the north side of the Kanosuke Distillery. The label was drawn by Yuna Yagi, a photographer, using the motif of “Fire” in the five elements.

[Tasting notes]
Color: dark amber
Nose: blackstrap molasses, apricot jam, cheese, pear, and nikki
Taste: Soft malt sweetness, prune, black pepper, ginger, chocolate
Finish: Spicy, followed by berry and fruit chocolate bittersweet

4-1. Tasting Notes

Nose.Dark blueberry, burnt caramel, caramelized
TasteRaisins, candy candy canes, caramel sauce
AftertasteHigh cocoa-like sweetness, astringency, spicy aftertaste

4-2. Product Specifications

Alcohol content50%
By SakeSingle Malt Japanese Whisky
Cask typePedro Ximenez Sherry Butt
Number of bottles soldLimited quantity
Suggested Retail Price15,070 yen (tax included)
Release dateMarch 15, 2023

5. Awards

No awards received at this time.

6. Price

6-1. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price

Product name Single Malt Kanosuke Artist Edition#002
Suggested retail price15,070 yen (including tax)

6-2. Resale price on Mercari

Resale prices on Mercari are around  25,000 yen to 29,000 yen. (*As of March 28, 2023)

6-3. Sold price on Yahoo! Auctions

Sold price on Yahoo! Auctions: Lowest 24,000 yen Highest 30,000 yen Average 26,721 yen (*Statistics for the past 180 days from 3/28/2023)

6-4. Rakuten, Yahoo Shopping, Amazon

It is also available on the mail order website for 29,700 yen. (*As of 3/28/2023)

嘉之助蒸溜所 シングルモルト 嘉之助 アーティストエディション#002 50% 700ml 箱付き /Kanosuke Single Malt Artist Edition #002 700ml

6-5. Price offered at BAR Shinkai

At “BAR Shinkai” operated by this site, we offer small quantities such as 1 glass, 45ml: 4,620 yen, 30ml: 3,080 yen, 15ml: 1,540 yen, etc.

7. Summary

The wine has a robust body with a rich oaky taste, a savory sweetness like burnt caramel, and gradually changes from an astringent taste similar to high cocoa to a spicy aftertaste. The depth and complexity of the flavor makes it a great wine to drink. It is different from the other Kanosuke wines that have been released up to now, and in a sense, it is a bottle that makes one wonder if it was an adventure. The aroma and taste are clear and enjoyable. It is easy to taste the changes in flavor as the ice melts on the rocks. It also has a slight fruity sweetness to it.

The “Artist Edition” will be available once a year. We are very much looking forward to next year’s release of Artist Edition #003. I am looking forward to seeing how the motif, label design, and base flavor will change.

■Please take a look at our other articles on Kanosuke.



Misato Ushiwata

Born in Fukushima Prefecture.
She attended a university in Tokyo, where she studied brewing and other sciences while translating articles for the "Japanese Whisky Dictionary".

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