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Whisky Reviews

Chichibu Paris Edition 2023

 

Part of major spirits distributor La Maison du Whisky's annual collection - it's not completely wrong if you compared it to an annual fashion show - are several Chichibu's for various major geographical markets, in particular with a dedicated edition for Paris which LMDW calls home, as well as London and US.

The annual Paris, London and US Editions have gone on for several years now and that's spurred quite a fair bit of interest from collectors, with each year sporting a new label design (except for the US Edition up until recently that is).

 

 

Typically each iteration features a landmark or some sort of motif that pays homage to the city or country for which it is bottled for - with the Paris Edition 2023 featuring landmark malls around the city. This year's edition will sport five different labels, featuring Le Bon Marché, BHV, Le Printemps, Samaritaine, and of course, the Galerie Lafayette (all containing the same Chichibu expression mind you!). 

The expression itself is a 9-barrel blend of ex-Bourbon, Quarter Cask Chibidaru and 5 to 7 year old Hogshead matured Japanese single malts that comes from a variety of barleys (even including some hand-malted).

Let's give it a go! 

Chichibu Paris Edition 2023 - Review

 

Tasting Notes

Aroma: Bright classic Bourbon cask scents of vanilla cream, peaches and yellow pears, gooseberries - it’s quite estery and fresh. There’s also a light farmhouse scent of dried herbs, mint jelly, and a little bit of smoked butter and hay.

Taste: Alot more of those farmhouse qualities are coming out here - there’s lots of smoked cream, animal hide, vanilla, dried hay and dried basil herbs. It’s really spicy, with a chilli Szechuan peppercorn tingling sensation, albeit still mostly sweet and buttery. There’s a light bit of lemon hard candy and chalky notes that are almost Islay-esque with that dash of sea spray.

Finish: More of a light sourness and umaminess here of soft cheeses - reblochon, a drizzle of honey and paired with some dried apricots. There’s a lingering air of dried oregano, with some silky maltose candy.

  

My Thoughts

I found this very striking on first sip - it’s very distinctive and acute with the intense farmhouse qualities, particularly the animal hide, soft cheese, and heavy dried herbs, that might together be alittle pungent. 

But on further sips I actually concluded that I liked this alot as more of the sweet honey and maltose candy came through, as well as the brighter yellow/green fruits. I found that this gave it not only a lot of nuance and complexity but also came through almost with a Mediterranean countryside vibe. 

For some reason I felt that this would go incredibly well with lamb chops. Anyway, it’s alittle bit of an acquired taste but really quite stellar if you take your time with it.

I managed to get a crack at this at Whisky Live Singapore, which if you're a spirits lover, is probably the buffet you're most looking forward to all year. I'm told next year's will be at the Singapore Flyer again 23 - 24th November 2024 - I look forward to having a go at the Chichibu Paris Edition 2024 then.

  

My Rating: 8/10

 

Score/Rating Scale :

  • 9-10 : Exceptional, highly memorable, 10/10 would buy if I could.
  • 7-8 : Excellent, well above most in its category, worth considering buy-zone.
  • 4-6 : Good, okay, alright; a few flaws, but acceptable; not bad, but not my personal preference; still worth trying, could be a buy if the price is right.
  • 1-3 : Not good; really did not enjoy; wouldn't even recommend trying.
  • 0 : Un-scored, might be damaged, new make, or very unusual.

   

Kanpai!

 

@111hotpot