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About Toki Whisky
I was hoping to take a break from blended whisky, but fate, and a sale that was too good to pass up at my local Japanese grocery, had other ideas. But, I’ve enjoyed other products from this brand, so I was happy for an excuse to finally try Toki Whisky.
Suntory, the legendary Japanese spirit brand, have been making whisky for almost a century. And while they’ve continued to expand their catalogue to include a variety of spirits, like Roku Gin, a majority of their offerings are whisky. Toki Whisky is one of Suntory’s cheaper whiskies, and is produced by blending whiskies from three different Suntory distilleries: Hakushu, Yamazaki, and Chita distilleries.
❖ Spirit: Japanese Blended Whisky
❖ Distillery: Blend of whiskies from Hakushu, Yamazaki and Chita Distilleries.
❖ ABV: 43% (86 Proof)
❖ Moderate Price
❖ Color: Straw
❖ Nose: Fruity, apple, vanilla
❖ Taste: apple, grape, vanilla, bitter oak. Reminds me a bit of Irish whisky
❖ Finish: long, apple, vanilla
2 oz Toki Whisky
2 teaspoons Simple Syrup
5 Mint Leaves
❖ Add mint leaves and simple syrup to a glass, and lightly muddle
❖ Add whisky and ice, and stir gently to combine
❖ Garnish with slice of grapefruit and mint sprig
Lately, I’ve been into spirit-forward cocktails that are refreshing and easy to make, and this recipe for a Toki Julep was exactly what I was looking for. This was my first experience with any Julep style cocktail, and I was curious how well the fruit and vanilla notes from Toki Whisky would balance with fresh mint.
Although I might tweak this recipe to better suit my personal taste, I was overall impressed with this cocktail. Just like I hoped, the fruit notes are vibrant and enhanced by the other ingredients. The sugar turns the apple notes into more of a candy apple flavor, and the mint adds pleasant herbal notes. I also liked how the cocktail starts out with a hint of the bitter oak notes that gradually disappear as the ice melts, and the sweetness takes over. The only thing I might change is the amount of sugar, since I did find the cocktail to be a touch too sweet.
There’s plenty I like about Toki Whisky, and I’m sure others will probably love it, but I was still left feeling a bit underwhelmed. I don’t need every spirit to have a complex or dynamic flavor, but, for the price, I was hoping this would be more than just a decent whisky that works well in cocktails. I had a similar experience with another Suntory product, Roku Gin, where I loved a certain aspect, but was disappointed by the overall package.
But, I still think Toki Whisky is worth checking out, especially if you’re looking for an approachable whisky with an elegant bottle and label design that looks great on the shelf. I loved the bright fruit and vanilla notes in the nose and palette, and the focused flavors translate well to cocktails. And, I will still definitely try other Suntory Whiskies in the future.
As always, drink responsibly.
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