Chivas Regal Mizunara Special Edition Review

While this, to me, is a poor man’s Japanese Harmony (which I also reviewed for Bourbon and Banter), it is not without its intrigue.

Chivas Regal Mizunara Scotch Whisky Review Header

Bottle Details

  • DISTILLER: Blended by Chivas
  • MASH BILL: A blend with mostly Speyside malts
  • AGE: NAS - probably the same 12 years as Chivas Regal (or close to it)
  • YEAR: 2019
  • PROOF: 80 Proof (40% ABV)
  • MSRP: $45-55


NOSE: Grapefruit | Grass clippings | Floral | No grain, all malt | Mild, like watered-down Chivas when nosed side-by-side

TASTE: Oily | Vanilla | Cinnamon | Reisen chocolates

FINISH: McDonald's chocolate milkshake | Longer than the rest would lead me to guess

SHARE WITH: A fan of Chivas or a fan of Japanese whisky would find this interesting

WORTH THE PRICE: If you're a big fan of Chivas Regal, then I think the price point is fair and would suggest giving it a shot.

BOTTLE, BAR OR BUST: This is a solid "bar" for me.

OVERALL: While this, to me, is a poor man's Japanese Harmony (which I also reviewed for Bourbon and Banter), it is not without its intrigue. If you research the use of Mizunara in whisky, you'll find quite a bit of disdain for what Chivas is doing here. People say that the qualities that Japanese oak imparts on whisky can't be rushed by using it as a "finishing" technique. While not being an expert on either whisky finishing or the qualities of woods that are grown half a world away, I think I respectfully disagree.

I try to keep the whiskies that the members of my family prefer on hand at all times, and my father-in-law prefers Chivas Regal. In tasting this side-by-side with standard Chivas, I can certainly taste a difference. In smoothing out the edges and adding a bit of chocolate, it also mutes some of the flavors of Chivas Regal, especially in the finish. While Chivas fans could thoroughly enjoy this, I think that this might be a more enjoyable curve ball for fans of Japanese whisky... or really anyone who likes to #drinkcurious!


NOSE: Rich and fruity, presenting aromas of pear and orange.

TASTE: Smooth and rich with honey sweetness and a trace of hazelnut.

FINISH: Distinctive and spicy

OVERALL: The world’s first Scotch whisky selectively finished in Japanese Mizunara oak casks. Chivas Mizunara is a perfect marriage of Scottish craft and Japanese tradition. This rare oak gives gentle aromatic flavours; the resulting whisky is wondrously indulgent with a touch of spice.