30in30 #19: treat for my birthday


Tast #19 of 30 in 30 is a treat for my birthday, which isn’t till next week. But today a box got delivered that made me happy, and it felt like a birthday treat.

Earlier this year, TWE had a lottery for Karuizawa 1984 sherry cask #3663, bottled in 2013 at 56.8% from a single cask. Karuizawa is a Japanese distillery that is no longer in production, and is quite in demand by collectors and investors. I put my email in the lottery for fun, and got the confirmation after the lottery closed that, as expected, I wasn’t allocated a bottle. I thought, next time we’re in Japan, we’ll continue looking for interesting Japanese whisky.

Then in March, I got another email from TWE that I had been allocated a bottle of the Karuizawa. That was a surprise, because I’d already forgotten about the earlier lottery. I guess people either were disqualified because of too many entries, or people who were allcoated didn’t follow through with the purchase, or some other reason. The fact was, I was being offered an opportunity to purchase one of a limited supply (reputably 240 bottles) of a highly rated whisky.

I didn’t decide straightaway, because of the £325 price tag. That’s a lot, even for a 29 year old single cask rare whisky. I did some research first. nojatta said,

If you manage to get your hands on a bottle of this, you really have won the lottery

whisky investor fb page said,

Strong buy. Any single cask releases from Karuizawa are towards the top of the ‘buy’ list

In the end, I decided that I would probably regret it if I didn’t get it. I saved on VAT, but had to pay shipment and customs, which added to the total cost. I handled the bottle very, very carefully when the delivery person came, and it’s now safely tucked away on my whisky shelf. All the talk about whisky investment is irrelevant, because I’ll have to be destitute before I begin to think about selling my whiskies. Will I ever open the bottle? May be, eventually. Have to be a special occasion, I think.