This is a Yoichi Single Malt was released this year to celebrate Founder, Masataka Taketsuru & Rita's 100th Marriage Anniversary. When Nikka was first established up in Yoichi, Hokkaido, it first sold apple juice and eventually apple brandy. In fact the name the company was initially called Dai Nippon Kaju ("Great Japanese Juice Company") and subsequently changed to Nikka. Apple was in abundance in that area and the company needed cash flow for their whisky production, so it made all sense to make apple juice and brandy. Therefore, apple brandy is in fact a vital and significant part of the Nikka business, and an important part of this special release.
Slightly muted on the nose to start. As it opens, it is quite malty with candied apples and soft smoke. Palate has some nice peatiness, medium rich, sweet, medium chewy, beautiful umami notes, a touch of shiiitake, earthy notes, and tinned fruits.