[Review] Single Malt Komagatake IPA Cask Finish Bottled in 2022

Whisky Review
Whisky Review
Hombo Shuzokomagatake Distillery

Komagatake IPA Cask Finish, which has been released in 2020 and 2021, is a very popular whiskey and is currently listed at a pre-priced price of almost twice the list price. This bottle is sure to be another popular one.Limited to 2,700 bottles. The resale price on Mercari is about $350,000.

Single Malt Komagatake IPA Cask Finish” has been on sale under the same product name since 2020, and the product description and alcohol content on the official website are almost identical.
It would be interesting to compare this product with the previous one. The flavors claimed in both aroma and taste were slightly different.


1. Manufacturer

Honbo Shuzo Co.

Established 1872
Head office location 891-0122; 3-27 Minamiei, Kagoshima City, Kagoshima Prefecture, Japan
Owned distilleries Mars Shinshu distillery, Mars Tsunuki distillery

2. Distilleries owned

Mars Shinshu Distillery

Location 4752-31 Miyata-mura, Kamiina-gun, Nagano 399-4301
Start of operation 1985

In 1949, Hombo Shuzo, which had been striving to make shochu, a Japanese distilled spirit, in Kagoshima, obtained a license to produce whiskey. Since then, the company has held on to the dream of “someday making real whiskey that takes full advantage of the Japanese climate.
After several years of whiskey production in Kagoshima, in 1960, he established the Mars Yamanashi Winery, a factory for wine and whiskey production in Yamanashi. Then, in order to engage in whisky production in earnest, he searched for an even more ideal location.

The natural conditions for whiskey making are very demanding: cold climate with clean air, moderate humidity, and good quality water.
In 1985, after searching for land that met these conditions, Mars Shinshu Distillery was established at an altitude of 798 meters at the foot of Komagatake Mountain in the Central Alps, Nagano Prefecture, in search of the best environment for whisky making.
In 1992, distillation was halted due to sluggish demand for whiskey. In 2009, when demand for Japanese whiskey was recovering and Japanese whiskey was gaining worldwide recognition, the distillery decided to resume distilling and started again in February 2011.
In September 2020, the distillery underwent a complete renewal for the first time in 35 years. The investment will be approximately 1.2 billion yen.

From May 2019, a new whiskey distillation building (including a barrel cellar) will be built to renovate aging facilities, improve the barrel cellar facilities with an eye to increasing whiskey production, and provide tours of the whiskey making process, as well as a visitor building to sell original whiskey and merchandise.
The new whiskey distillation building has a total floor area of 1,996m2 (including the barrel cellar, which will hold approximately 2,500 barrels), and the visitor’s building has a floor area of 746m2.
Reference: Hombo Brewery official website

Production capacity: 1.1 tons of malted barley per day
■Brewing capacity: approximately 700L/day, approximately 185KL/year (planned for FY2020)
Main facilities: 1 malt crusher, 1 mash tun reuter (saccharification tank) 6KL, 3 stainless steel fermentation tanks 6KL, 3 Douglas fir wooden fermentation tanks (relocated) 6KL, first distillation kettle (relocated)

For more information about Mars Shinshu Distillery, please see also here↓.


3. product name and photo

Single Malt Komagatake IPA Cask Finish Bottled in 2022

Single Malt Komagatake IPA Cask Finish 2022


4. characteristics

Single Malt Komagatake IPA Cask Finish” is a single malt whiskey finished in empty casks in which India Pale Ale (IPA), a medium dark beer brewed at the Minami Shinshu Beer Komagatake Brewery using an abundance of hops, was laid down.

The aroma is reminiscent of fresh citrus fruits derived from hops, the taste is clear with grapefruit and herbs, and the finish is crisp and bitter.
It has a crisp, bitter aftertaste, making it a perfect match for a highball.

Reference: Hombo Shuzo K.K. official mail order shop

4-1. Tasting Notes

Aroma Citrus with acidity, citrus, mint, herbs
Taste Woody and oily with moderate acidity and bitterness reminiscent of beer (pale ale)
Aftertaste Sweet bourbon barrel aroma, IPA-derived maltiness, bitter aftertaste

4-2. Product Specifications

Alcohol content 52% alcohol by volume
By Alcohol Single Malt Japanese Whiskey
Cask type Bourbon casks
Volume 700ml
Number of bottles sold Limited to 2,700 bottles
Suggested retail price 9,460 yen (tax included)
Release date Early August 2022

5. Awards

No awards received at this time.

6. Price

6-1. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price

Product name Single Malt Komagatake IPA Cask Finish Bottled in 2022
Capacity 700ml
Suggested Retail Price 9,460 yen (including tax)

Resale price on Mercari

The resale price on Mercari is Around 12,800 yen to 16,000 yen is as follows. (*As of 8/9/2022)

6-3. Sold price on Yahoo! Auction

The winning bid price on Yahoo! Auctions is Sold at around 12,000 yen on average Sold at auction on Yahoo! (*Statistics for the past 180 days from 8/9/2022)



6-4. Rakuten, Yahoo Shopping, Amazon

No products are currently available on mail-order sites. (*As of 8/9/2022)


*This is the price of the previous Komagatake IPA Cask Finish 2021.

6-5.Price offered at BAR Shinkai

The “BAR Shinkai” operated by this site is 1 glass, 45ml: 2,970 yen, 30ml: 1,980 yen, 15ml: 990 yen We offer this service at.


7. Summary

Komagatake IPA Cask Finish, released in 2020, is a post-aged IPA in casks, so it tastes similar to beer, but more like it when served with soda.

In addition to the hoppy flavor, there is a strong impression of citrus, mint, and herbs, giving the impression of both beer and herbal refreshment. The beer has a refreshing citrus, oaky, and oily taste, which changes to a more complex flavor.

It is hard to find such an unusual whisky from other companies, so this is a whisky that you should definitely try.

Please take a look at other articles about Hombo Shuzo.




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 whisky 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

(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 whisky 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.

(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 whisky? 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.

(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 whisky 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.

鈴木 あかり

Born in Saitama, Japan.
Also active as an actor and graphic designer. He joined Shinkai BAR because he likes to drink. He is in charge of translating articles into English and other languages for the "Japanese Whisky Dictionary".

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