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Froggy the Great

Randomness XVI: Brains versus Bleach - an Epic Rap Battle in Iambic Pentameter.

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I go home tomorrow! I'll get to sleep in a real bed at real hours! 

 

First I have to go to Grandpa's old house to pick out what heirlooms I want before he sells the whole pile.

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2 hours ago, Thoramel said:

 

Just out of curiosity, what aged adult beverage would that be? I too like a good aged product from time to time and if something I like is going to be disappearing that I may need to search it out as well. Plus, I think we are living in the same general region (Ohio vs WV), so you may be talking about something I see around here. 

 

Hakushu 12 year single malt Japanese whisky, which is easily my favorite Scotch-style whisky. At the same time, they also discontinued the Hibiki 17 year blend.

 

No store around me ever stocked either, and trying to buy my Hakushu online almost always saw it sold with a 300% markup. What should have been a $90 bottle would be listed for almost $300. So I had a friend who lived in the suburbs of big cities, first Raleigh, NC and now DC, keeping an eye on liquor stores around them. Every year for the past 5 years I've been lucky enough to snag a bottle of Hakushu at retail that isn't marked up. One year I managed to get two bottles, even. But the combination of price, rarity, and complete lack of local availability meant that I've made due with my single bottle, usually making it last me 3 or 4 months and then waiting patiently for when either I make my annual New Year's trip to visit my friends or they make a trip to visit me. Because those are the only times I can possibly get a bottle.

 

As of two weeks ago there was a liquor store almost an hour away from my friend that had a bottle of Hakushu in stock. But because of its distance relative to other liquor stores near them, they haven't gone to check if it's still there. So I'm hoping for a small miracle come Monday. Or Sunday, if I decide to leave a day earlier than usual just to give myself more time to hit multiple liquor stores searching for an elusive bottle.

 

I found an article about the Japanese whisky shortage and how the market is responding while looking to confirm the discontinuation. The way it's responding isn't good. See, the last 10 years have seen a giant boom in Japanese whisky. They started winning all sorts of awards in the early and mid 2000's, and it's continued to this day, so they've earned a lot of acclaim that's put them on a lot of shelves. But Japan doesn't have a strict enough regulation on what can be called "Japanese whisky," basically only requiring it to be bottled in Japan, so unscrupulous sellers are buying foreign, typically Canadian and Scottish, whisky in bulk, bottling it in Japan, and selling it as "Japanese whisky" when it actually isn't. Which is leading to people losing trust in the term. And the ones that are producing in Japan were very slow to increase production and are increasingly removing age statements from their bottles. Hakushu apparently now has a bottle in Japan without an age statement, which doesn't bode well for the discontinuation of the 12 year. 5 or 6 years ago Hibiki introduced "Hibiki Harmony" which is a no age statement version of Hibiki 17, and it's gone from $60 a bottle to almost $100 in it's own right, while Hibiki 17 itself has a retail list of $120(but good luck finding it at that). I fear that Yamazaki 12, another staple Japanese whisky that's been in short supply, will follow.

 

And I fear that when my whisky does come back to the market, probably in about a decade according to an article I read, it won't be at its reasonable retail price. I'm afraid they'll look at the scalpers pricing online from before it was even discontinued and they'll raise the price well above $100. Which will make it even less likely that it'll be stocked locally, since most local liquor stores won't stock high priced stuff due to low demand, and make it that much harder for me to buy. But my biggest worry is that it won't come back at all. 10 years is a long time, and though they said it will still be available in "limited quantities" the implication is that those quantities won't really be sold outside of Japan. People may forget about it outside of Japan, and it may take years after a return to general production to return to worldwide distribution...

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Unfortunately, our state's liquor control agency doesn't list it as currently being sold anywhere in Ohio. Which is doubly unfortunate, because in Ohio the state sells all the liquor to stores and bars and so there is at least some level of control over price gouging.

 

I would recommend occasionally checking with Party Source in Bellevue, KY. It's a heck of a drive. But they list all their in-stock spirits on their website (very large selection) and they don't overprice stuff. Quite the opposite actually. They have contracts set up with a lot of KY distillers to age whiskeys in their barrels and then sell it at a lower price. 

 

They have your whiskey listed on their site right now for $91.99. But it's out of stock at the moment. If you look at their website they have a "notify me" feature so you can conceivably get an email when it's back around. If it comes back around. 

 

Sorry that wasn't more help and good luck. 

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1 hour ago, Thoramel said:

 

They have your whiskey listed on their site right now for $91.99. But it's out of stock at the moment. If you look at their website they have a "notify me" feature so you can conceivably get an email when it's back around. If it comes back around. 

 

And therein lies the problem. The only places that ever seem to have it in stock are the ones trying to sell it for $300. I've never run into that at a physical store, not in NC and not in MD or VA, but if I were to ever try to buy it online that's how it would go. And I'm not spending $300 on a bottle of whisky. I'm not that big of a connoisseur, so if I can't find what I want at a price below $150, I know I can still find plenty that I like at well below it.

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Is that the new version of Suntory by Hakushu  or is that a different blend?  Just curious.  I had Suntory 12 in my cabinet a few years ago.  It was very nice, but as you say, no longer available in Kentucky either. 

 

Good luck in your searches.  My preferences for Scotch have always been with the Aberlour distillery, especially the A'bunha but everyone's tastes are different.  Another true favorite of mine, although it is also a very rare duck is Dialuane from the UK Flora and Fauna series.  Thick and rich, it pours almost like a thin oil.  Its a unique experience.  On the other hand, it is available, I just have to go to the UK to pick it up or have my brother receive the shipment in New York where they will ship to....

 

Good hunting!

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1 hour ago, Kangaroorex said:

Is that the new version of Suntory by Hakushu  or is that a different blend?  Just curious.  I had Suntory 12 in my cabinet a few years ago.  It was very nice, but as you say, no longer available in Kentucky either. 

 

Good luck in your searches.  My preferences for Scotch have always been with the Aberlour distillery, especially the A'bunha but everyone's tastes are different.  Another true favorite of mine, although it is also a very rare duck is Dialuane from the UK Flora and Fauna series.  Thick and rich, it pours almost like a thin oil.  Its a unique experience.  On the other hand, it is available, I just have to go to the UK to pick it up or have my brother receive the shipment in New York where they will ship to....

 

Good hunting!

 

Hakushu is a distillery owned by Suntory. It's often listed as "Suntory Hakushu 12 year." But Suntory also owns Yamazaki, which has its own 12 year that's sometimes listed as "Suntory Yamazaki 12 year." I honestly don't know why they do that, because the brand name is "The Hakushu" or "The Yamazaki," respectively, and Suntory is just the corporate owner of both distilleries. It would be like if they started listing all the varieties of Jim Beam as "Suntory Jim Beam" because Suntory also owns Jim Beam. Or "Pernod Ricard Aberlour," to borrow your Scotch as an example, since the Aberlour distillery is owned by Pernod Ricard. Aside from the import markings and the website, Suntory is not a prominent part of the label.

 

But if it was a green bottled Suntory whisky, it was Hakushu. If it was a clear bottle it was probably Yamazaki.

157748172114392089290493381479.jpg

 

Edit: I guess "Suntory Whisky" is printed in the glass itself on the back of the bottle, though. So maybe that's why. Never noticed it before.

Edited by Unruly
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4 minutes ago, PaganMegan said:

I never want to hear the words eyeball and slosh together, ever again. :zombie:

You have both my sympathy and my understanding of the context.

GEM

Son in Law is a big Peeps Fan so he sent me this:

Spoiler

gaiwpjwqnrmqhmmah3aj.thumb.jpg.11c2aad81acbd610d2dbef9d77e67dff.jpg

 

GEM

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53 minutes ago, Unruly said:

 

Hakushu is a distillery owned by Suntory. It's often listed as "Suntory Hakushu 12 year." But Suntory also owns Yamazaki, which has its own 12 year that's sometimes listed as "Suntory Yamazaki 12 year." I honestly don't know why they do that, because the brand name is "The Hakushu" or "The Yamazaki," respectively, and Suntory is just the corporate owner of both distilleries. It would be like if they started listing all the varieties of Jim Beam as "Suntory Jim Beam" because Suntory also owns Jim Beam. Or "Pernod Ricard Aberlour," to borrow your Scotch as an example, since the Aberlour distillery is owned by Pernod Ricard. Aside from the import markings and the website, Suntory is not a prominent part of the label.

 

But if it was a green bottled Suntory whisky, it was Hakushu. If it was a clear bottle it was probably Yamazaki.

157748172114392089290493381479.jpg

 

Edit: I guess "Suntory Whisky" is printed in the glass itself on the back of the bottle, though. So maybe that's why. Never noticed it before.

 

It is pretty weird.  This was around 2012-13 when I got the bottle. It was Green and said Suntory on the bottle but it also had Hakushu on it.  i dont remember much more than that because the only thing left of the bottle is the memory and my tasting notes :rolleyes: (need a whistful emoji...)  I apparently like it quite a bit because the bottle only lasted 6 months and my cabinet at the time had 40 bottles scotch bottles.  So it could be an older bottling style or am just remembering the bottle label wrong.

 

Anyway pretty good single malt.  Unfortunately i cant be that helpful as i didnt put any comparisons to other whiskeys in my notes (sorry)  and my taste memory is not giving me anything more than highlandish and somewhere between cragganmore and Balviene for a flavor profile but that could be off too.

 

I do hope you find some or find something that is equal or better!  (if you are every in NY in the fall or Chicago in the spring see if you can attend the Malt advocate's annual whiskey tasting.  it is not to be missed!  Its pricey but I guarantee that you will drink more than the cost of your admission in the first hour of the 4 hour event.  (heck the second year i went I drank my admission fee in the first two booths:  I got to sample a 50 year Macallan bottled in 1878 (it was a promo for a release they were doing) and a 37 year old Bowmore (Islay whiskeys just need time in the barrel, lots of time.  The flavor was mindblowing)

 

29 minutes ago, Green Eyed Monster said:

You have both my sympathy and my understanding of the context.

GEM

Son in Law is a big Peeps Fan so he sent me this:

  Reveal hidden contents

gaiwpjwqnrmqhmmah3aj.thumb.jpg.11c2aad81acbd610d2dbef9d77e67dff.jpg

 

GEM

Okay, you win.  That is... special.  of course now all i can think of is the peep chicken those came from and what they look like!

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Not going to make it home today as planned. Nasty snow storm (flurries with 1-3" accumulation ended up as heavy snow with about 8" and still falling) meant that the normally 75 minute trip from Blanding to Moab, UT took about 3 hours (including the 1 hour road closure). Note that none of this was shown on any of the traffic maps, including Google, which was listing a "16 minute delay".

 

So we'll get going early tomorrow and with luck be home by lunch.

 

A bit frustrating but the motel we're in is nice enough, so no great sacrifice.

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12 hours ago, TGP said:

How’s the hunt for a new Wolf Den going @Chaoswolf ?

 

You were going to look at something Xmas Day? Eve?

Christmas day. It's a little small, but it'll probably work for now. Hopefully going back to look again with my wife to see what she thinks.

Still looking for other places, too.

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I have officially acquired a 100+ year old Guanyin carved of wood. I'd figured Grandma acquired it somewhere before I was born. Turns out it was older than I thought, Grandpa's grandparents acquired it.

 

It has been carefully wrapped and given to UPS along with a few other things. I will actually acquire it in a week and a half when it's delivered at home. Only then will it be mine.

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