Yamazaki 18 Review

Yamazaki 18 Review

Yamazaki 18 doesn’t really exist any more. Like all of the other age-stated Japanese whiskies it’s pretty much done for and the only way to really find a bottle is via an auction, high-priced specialty store or a private seller. It’s aged for at least 18 years in ex-bourbon casks, ex-sherry casks and Mizunara casks. Outside of that there’s not much else to say about it. It’s a pretty straight-forward whisky, so on to the Yamazaki 18 review!

Yamazaki 18 Info

Region: Japan

Distiller: Suntory
Mashbill: 100% Malted Barley
Cask: ex-Bourbon, ex-Sherry and Mizunara
Age: 18 years
ABV: 43%

Price: NA – Auction or specialty store.

Yamazaki 18 Review


Rich fruit, soft warm pastries, buttery caramel, vanilla, malt, spice and a touch of oak and ash. This is a lovely aroma.

The palate keeps the rich full theme moving along with notes of fruit, malt, char, dark sweets, vanilla, toasted grain, nuts and again a touch of oak but this time accompanied by some spice.

Long fruity drawl interspersed with pockets of malt, nuts, spice and oak.

Well balanced, full round body and a slick, coating, almost oily feel.

Yamazaki 18 is another one of those highly lauded and hard to find Japanese whiskies that people seem to go ga-ga for… and this time it’s warranted. Everything I said about the Yamazaki 12 years being a good but unexciting whisky does not apply to the Yamazaki 18 – this is a dynamic and exciting whisky. I want a whole bottle of this.

Yamazaki 18 is a rich full whisky experience I’d love to have a reoccurring affair with. It is the dram that makes me sad about the current state of Japanese whisky. Both the lack of availability and the un-obtainably high price affixed to their increasingly rare sightings.

SCORE: 92/100 (A-)

Yamazaki 18 Review - Score Breakdown
  • Nose - 92
  • Palate - 92
  • Finish - 92
  • Balance, Body & Feel - 92


Yamazaki 18 is a DAMN good whisky. Would love to own a bottle!

Josh Peters

Josh Peters

I read about, think about, write about, and drink whisk(e)y. In short, it's my passion.
Josh Peters

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2 Responses to Yamazaki 18 Review

  1. It’s not done. In fact, it’s all over NY, esp Brooklyn. The prices are inflated but the supply is definitly there. And it still goes out to little pockets here and there.

    But yes, an A range for sure.

  2. Actually it’s not done at all. Suntory just put a reduction to the release amount and raise the primary market price of both Yamazaki and Hakushu. Say they officially raised Yamazaki 18 from $100 to $600 in here, so anything you pay, you pay to Suntory, rather than any auction sellers.

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