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Chichibu 2012 Single Cask Chichibu-Meisen Collection Fashion Edit for Harvey Nichols

What you need to know:

  • UK departmental store Harvey Nichols has released an 8 Year Old Single Cask Chichibu that was matured in red wine casks.
  • It was bottled for Harvey Nichols by online spirits retailer, The Whisky Exchange, at 62.9% abv. The outturn was 120 bottles.
  • It is part of the distillery’s Chichibu-Meisen collection which spotlights a key traditional cultural practice in Chichibu – the weaving of silk textiles.
  • These silk textiles were popular in the early 20th Century for its striking patterns and floral motifs and its durability, making them popular amongst young women who wore them as casual fashion kimonos.

(Image Source: The Whisky Shop, Meisenkan)

Harvey Nichols has released a red wine matured single cask Chichibu as part of the distillery’s Chichibu-Meisen collection, bottled by online spirits retailer, The Whisky Exchange. A total of 120 bottles has been released, so good luck finding one.

This comes from cask #5742 and is 8 years old, bottled at 62.9% strength.


Chichibu Meisen was a popular kimono fabric in the early 20th Century. (Image Source: Asahi)

As Chichibu Distillery (read about the distillery here) is all about craftsmenship and showcasing the local Chichibu specialties, the collection celebrates Chichibu Meisen, a traditional silk fabric made in Chichibu.

Chichibu Meisen textiles originated in the Edo period, when Chichibu produced its own silk. By the early 20th Century, a unique Hogushi-Nassen dyeing technique helped to push the craft into widespread popularity. This technique uses complimentary colors to create an iridescent sheen and interweaving patterns and local flora were commonly featured motifs.


The special Hogushi-Nassen dyeing technique made Chichibu Meisen a beloved textile for its striking patterns. (Image Source: ANA) 

Chichibu Meisen was also known for holding its colors well and for its dexterity which gave the textile long lasting durability, hence it became known for being of high quality. This was the result of the Hogushi-Ori weaving technique where the cloth is first temporarily woven and patterns were dyed in. Subsequently the weft is drawn out and replaced with other threads to be woven again, creating beautiful splash patterns.

The combination of striking designs and their durability made them particularly popular with young women who wore them as trendy casual fashion kimonos. 


At the Chichibu Meisen Museum, the practice is kept alive till today and visitors can even try their hand at making their own textiles the traditional way. (Image Source: Meisenkan)

Till today, Chichibu’s local Chichibu-Meisen Museum keeps the practice alive and visitors to the cultural centre can try their hand at using the Hogushi-Ori and Hogushi-Nassen techniques to create beautiful silk textiles.