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Review: How Does the Newest Entry-Level Japanese Whisky Stack Up?

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Japanese distiller Nikka expanded its range of whisky with Nikka Days, an aptly named malt and grain blend that's as energetic and crisp as a summer afternoon. But is it any good? We did the legwork to find out.

The Lowdown:

Clocking in at 80 proof, it's priced at $49 USD and available in select markets throughout the United States as of late July. A larger expansion is expected in 2021.

The Look: 

Golden hues of brown glow from behind a refreshingly contemporary label, which is sure to brighten up any bar cart.

The Taste:

Not short on complexities despite its easy nature, citrus notes kick things off (green apple and pear, most notably) before moving to tastes of creamy vanilla and delicate white chocolate. You'll also pick up moments of strawberry licorice and lemon zest, which combine lovingly with the crushed barley and malting floor. It's delicious through every step, lapping similarly affordable options in the category (Suntory Toki, in particular) while offering an intriguing alternative to lighter, floral bourbons like Basil Hayden's.

The Verdict:


Overall, it's a well-balanced whisky that manages to deliver engaging character despite its light presence and should be considered by all Japanese whisky enthusiasts looking for a more wallet-friendly daily sipper than popular bottles like Nikka from the Barrell and Hibiki Harmony.