From Japan, a make of Mars with Scotch and Shinshu distillery liquor. By Steve Notman.

What is it When Hombo Shuzo Group, the owner of Shinshu distillery launched Mars Maltage Cosmo at the Tokyo International Bar Show in 2015, it turned heads. The Mars Maltage Cosmo is a blended malt bottled at the Shinshu distillery, which was established in 1985. Located 798 metres above sea level at the heart of the Japanese Alps, the make up of the blend consists of stocks from Scotland and malt that was produced after 2011 at Shinshu. Cosmo refers to one of the peaks of the mountains surrounding the distillery. It is created by master blender Koki Takehira and bottled at 43 per cent.

What it tastes like The nose is red berries, ripe orchard fruits, nuts with subtle smoke and vanilla. Pears and notes of menthol with a toffee oakiness greets you on the palate, before leading to a long lingering finish with subtle cocoa, plum and orange blossom.