Vine & Table’s history with Nikka, one of Japan’s oldest and most respected whisky brands, has been long and pleasurable. Among the first in the Midwest to feature their single and blended malt expressions, we were also early proponents of Nikka’s whiskies from the historic Coffey still at Miyagikyo Distillery in northern Japan. ~ Dan Angelo, Vine & Table Spirits Buyer
Nikka has been at the forefront of western-style whisky in Japan ever since its founder, Masataka Taketsuru, scion of a Sake producing family, enrolled at the University of Edinburgh in 1918 and returned to Japan in 1920 with a Scottish bride in tow. Determined to make Scotch whisky at home, he had also apprenticed at Hazelburn distillery in Campbeltown to learn malt whisky distillation and blending.
Now the company has branched out with Nikka Coffey Gin, a uniquely Japanese take on the London Dry style. Along with the usual botanicals of juniper berries, Angelica, and coriander seeds, Nikka Coffey Gin features Japanese citruses like Yuzu, Kabosu, Amanatsu and Shequasar. There is also a touch of apples, a fruit deeply related to the history of Nikka, followed by pleasantly tangy hints of green Japanese Sansho pepper on the finish. This is the gin that Bombay Sapphire East wishes that it could be. The first notes apparent to the nose are the exotic citrus fruits and the palate is pleasantly soft, but the spicy notes of the sansho pepper quickly belie any innocence – this is no generic house gin. An ideal ingredient for signature cocktails, try this with Fever Tree’s new Aromatic Tonic Water or in a sake spritz. For $46.99, this will take both your sipping gin and gin cocktails to a new level.
Buy online: Nikka Japanese Coffey Gin $46.99 each