Pure Malt Goodness

So there I was, standing at the Sydney International airport, completely bamboozled by the sheer range of whiskeys. The challenge  – which one to choose?!?!?!?!

Within a few minutes of standing there, a staff member approached me and asked if I need any assistance. “Yes I do, thank you very much” I replied and I asked her if there were any exclusive Duty Free Whiskeys that she would recommend.

On presenting a $400 option, (which I wouldn’t have minded, but just a bit over the allotted budget) I let her know that ideally, I would like to cap my purchase at around $100.

“Well sir, we have this bottle here for only $190” Heh? Did you just not hear me honey.…”


“That does look nice and I’ve heard some good reviews about it, but as I said, ideally around the $100 mark; anything else you would recommend?”

“Sure, we have a special where you can buy two of these bottles, you can have it for $150”. And at that point, that’s when my male hearing cut in and walked straight out the door.

“Thank you for your help, I’ll just look around myself” and off she went.

So after looking up and down the isles for a few more moments, I settled on the Taketsuru Pure Malt Whisky. And what a great pick it was.


The Pure Malt is my first foray into Japanese Whisky and my first Blended whisky to add to my top shelf. This malt is made by The Nikka Whisky Distilling Company and its name “Taketsuru Pure Malt” pays homage to the Nikka founding father ‘Masataka Taketsuru’. Nikka has two distilleries in the north of Japan, Yoichi and Miyagikyo with both distilleries contributing their whiskeys to make Nikka Pure Malt. Being a blended whisky. The Pure Malt has been aged on average for 10 years in a variety of oak casks.



Nikka Pure Malt Claim: Engaging, Fresh and Fruity

WHISKEYTEK Review: The notes of barley play heavily into the nose along with fresh citrus.


Nikka Pure Malt Claim: Coffee, Licorice, toasted oak, coffee ground. Vigorous, assertive and uncompromising.

WHISKEYTEK Review: Licorice plays heavily into this whisky along with notes of Oak from its maturation.


Nikka Pure Malt Claim: Licorice candy all the way. A refined bitterness quickly gives way to more integrated, medicinal aromas: Camphor, eucalyptus.

WHISKEYTEK Review:  It is definitely bitter on landing on the tongue, but this is soon replaced and finished with a smooth note of the malted barley.



43% Alc/vol


Yes, yes yes. I would so buy this again. Looking at the Taketsuru range, the Pure Malt is at the starting point of their selection. I am keen to get my hands on of their 17 or 21 year old Taketsuru whiskey… Thank goodness Christmas is just around the corner.

If you have tried the 17 and 21 year old, do you have a recommendation of one over the other? I just hope you didn’t go through the same dramas I went through in choosing your Dram. If you did, I would love to hear your story.

Whiskytek…over and out.

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