[Review] Single Malt Yoichi Apple Brandy Wood Finish

Whisky Review
Whisky Review
Nikka WhiskyYoichi Distillery

The year 2020 marks the 100th wedding anniversary of Nikka Whisky’s founder Masataka Taketsuru and his wife Rita.
In 1934, he founded Dainippon Fruit Juice Company (now Nikka Whisky Co., Ltd.). Since whisky takes time to mature, products made from apples supported the early days of the company. This is a limited-quantity product made by finishing Yoichi and Miyagikyo, the fruit of Taketsuru’s dream, in apple brandy barrels. Limited edition of 6,700 bottles.


1. Manufacturer

Nikka Whisky Co.

Establishment1934 (Showa 9)
Head office location4-31, Minami-Aoyama 5-chome, Minato-ku, Tokyo 107-8616, Japan
Owned distilleriesYoichi Distillery, Miyagikyo Distillery, Ben Nevis Distillery

2. Distilleries

Yoichi Distillery

Location 7-6 Kurokawa-cho, Yoichi-cho, Yoichi-gun, Hokkaido 046-0003, Japan
Start of operation 1936

The Yoichi Distillery in Hokkaido is known as the Scotland of Japan. It was established in 1934 by Masataka Taketsuru, also known as Masan, whose predecessor was Dainippon Fruit Juice Co. Masataka Taketsuru believed that a place similar to Scotland Cool and humid climate, rich water source and clear air Masataka Taketsuru chose Yoichi, located at the base of the Shakotan Peninsula, west of Otaru, from among various candidate sites. Masataka Taketsuru’s goal for his first distillery was to create a heavy and powerful malt whisky. He was determined to replicate the whisky-making methods he had learned at the distilleries of Scotland, without compromise. The symbol of this dedication is the “ Straight head type pot still The symbol of this dedication is the use of ” coal ” and ” direct coal fire distillation. The result is a heavy, fragrant, heavily peaty raw material that produces a unique single malt with a peaty aroma and a touch of saltiness. This distillation method is based on the method used at Longmorn Distillery, where Taketsuru himself studied. If it is necessary to make real whisky, we will protect it even if it is inefficient. Such passion, which can be said to be the origin of Nikka Whisky, and Masataka Taketsuru’s dream have been handed down to this day.

3. Product name and photo

Single Malt Yoichi Apple Brandy Wood Finish

4. Characteristics

Well-balanced aroma of apples and peat

After normal aging, it is further aged for about 6 months in barrels that have been used to age apple brandy for more than 28 years. The aroma is sweet, aromatic and rich, like apple compote. The savory and mellow sweetness reminiscent of apple pie and cookies is harmonized with the richness of Yoichi peat.


4-1. Tasting Notes

AromaSweet aroma like apple compote, malty and rich.
TasteSweet and savory like baked goods, reminiscent of apple pie and fruit cookies.
AftertasteFaint peat and wheat sweetness lingers pleasantly.

4-2. Product Specifications

Alcohol content47% alcohol by volume
alcohol categorySingle malt whisky
Barrel alcoholApple brandy barrels
Number of bottles sold6,700 bottles
Suggested retail price16,500 yen (tax included)
Release dateMarch 24, 2020

Awards received

No awards have been received at this time.

6. Price

6-1. Manufacturer’s suggested retail price


Product nameSingle Malt Yoichi Apple Brandy Wood Finish
Suggested Retail PriceTax included: 16,500 yen

6-2. Resale price on Mercari

The resale price on Mercari is Around 24,500 yen to 33,000 yen The resale price on Mercari is as follows. (*As of 3/29/2021)


6-3. Sold price on Yahoo Auction

The winning bid price on Yahoo Auction is Lowest bidder: 23,005 yen, highest bidder: 31,000 yen, average bidder: 26,653 yen (*Statistics for the past 120 days as of 3/29/2021)


6-4. Rakuten, Yahoo Shopping, Amazon

It is also sold on mail order sites at Around 35,000 yen to 40,000 yen It is also sold at (*As of 3/29/2021)

6-5. Price offered at BAR Shinkai

At “BAR SHINKAI”, which is operated by this site, it is offered at 1 glass, 45ml: 5,500 yen, 30ml: 3,740 yen, 15ml: 1,870 yen (*As of 3/29/2021) Bar Shinkai, which is operated by this site, offers it at

Information about “BAR Shinkai”
Japanese Whisky Dictionary operates three BAR Shingai stores in Minato Ward, Tokyo. In addition to the Japanese whiskeys introduced on this site, they also hand...

7. Summary

The aroma of apple and peat are well balanced and harmonized, not too sweet.
When you sip it straight, the smokiness characteristic of Yoichi comes first, but the apple also comes out faintly later. It has a surprisingly refreshing taste.
When water is added, the apples come to the fore and the sweetness increases. There is also a hint of vanilla.

I thought the apple brandy would be pretty sweet, but it’s surprisingly refreshing to drink.
If you drink it on the rocks, the alcohol mellows out and it becomes a refreshing apple.
Even if you drink it with soda, you can enjoy the sweetness and lingering aftertaste without losing the apple.

This is a whisky that will satisfy you in every way.
In a word, it is a “clean and refreshing apple”.

Please check out the other articles about single malt Yoichi.

[Review] Single Malt Yoichi Manz...
Single Malt Yoichi is further aged in Manthanilla barrels aged for 50 years, bottling without cooling filtration.
[Review] Single Malt Yoichi
Released on September 1, 2015. 2017 ISC Gold Award. The weight and aroma unique to straight head pot still and coal open flame distillation. The heavy peat-type...

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.

新海 博之

Born July 17, 1981 in Kitahiroshima City, Hokkaido, Japan
After graduating from university, joined NTT Data Customer Service Corporation as a new graduate.
2010: Opened "Azabujuban BAR Shinkai" → 2016: Developed specialty "Yakuzen Curry" → 2018: Opened "Toranomon BAR Shinkai" and in 2019 "Shibadaimon BAR Shinkai" → 2020: Started web media "Japanese Whisky Dictionary".
We will daily communicate the appeal of Japanese whiskey as something we, as bartenders, can do.

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