Recent Posts

Sakurao Gin Hamagou arrives September 3

Sakurao Gin Hamagou arrives September 3

Hiroshima’s Sakurao Distillery has announced a new Japanese craft gin called Sakurao Gin Hamagou. It’s a limited run of 5000 bottles, and is slated to launch on September 3. There are no details about the new gin yet available, but Hamagou is Japanese for roundleaf […]

We’re getting more Fuji Sanroku Signature Blend

We’re getting more Fuji Sanroku Signature Blend

2018 hasn’t been the greatest year for Japanese whisky. While we’ve seen some new distilleries pop out new born whiskies, for the established players, things have been pretty gloomy. But finally, there’s some good news out of Shizuoka Prefecture. Kirin has announced that beginning August […]

Event Report: Gin Live Tokyo 2018

Event Report: Gin Live Tokyo 2018

Gin Live Tokyo 2018 was held for the first time on July 28, 2018! While the scale of the event was somewhat smaller than last year’s Gin-Posium, it was a great opportunity to get caught up on some of the latest offerings from both domestic […]

JR East Japan Hotels Creative Cocktail Competition 2018 on September 24

JR East Japan Hotels Creative Cocktail Competition 2018 on September 24

JR East Japan Hotels has announced they’ll be holding a cocktail competition for the first time, dubbed the “JR East Japan Hotels Creative Cocktail Competition 2018.” It’s taking place on September 24 from 12:30PM to 6PM at Hotel Metropolitan Ikebukuro, the brand’s flagship property. These […]

Masataka Taketsuru: To The Mecca of Whisky via America

Masataka Taketsuru: To The Mecca of Whisky via America

2018 marks a century since the founder of Nikka Whisky, Masataka Taketsuru, set out on a journey that would alter the history of Japanese whisky. Based primarily on his serialized autobiography originally published in Nikkei in 1968, in Part One of this series we covered his […]

Yamazaki Umeshu is getting a smoky cask-aged edition

Yamazaki Umeshu is getting a smoky cask-aged edition

Suntory may be running low on whisky from Yamazaki, but that probably leaves them with plenty of empty casks. They have now announced a new edition of their Yamazaki cask-aged umeshu. This one is not simply aged in Yamazaki casks, but charred Yamazaki casks. That should […]

Kirin’s Fuji Gotemba Distillery

Kirin’s Fuji Gotemba Distillery

At the foot of Mt. Fuji lies Kirin’s one and only distillery: the Fuji Gotemba Distillery. It’s an easy daytrip from Tokyo, making this another no-brainer for any fan of Japanese whisky. About Fuji Gotemba Distillery Despite dominating the Japanese beer and chuhai scene, Kirin […]

Whisky licenses for Nikka’s Satsuma Tsukasa Distillery, Kizakura’s Tamba Factory

Whisky licenses for Nikka’s Satsuma Tsukasa Distillery, Kizakura’s Tamba Factory

Is Nikka Whisky readying a third whisky distillery in Kagoshima? That’s the question that’s been floating around my head for the past, I dunno, ten minutes. Japan’s National Tax Agency has issued a whisky distillation license to Nikka Whisky for their Satsuma Tsukasa Distillery. At […]

Infographic: Japanese Whisky, Real or Fake?

Infographic: Japanese Whisky, Real or Fake?

The latest infographic makes it easy to tell if the “Japanese” whisky you’re drinking is actually Japanese or not! This is a bit of a hot-button topic at the moment — see my recent interview with Dave Broom to find out why. There’s also a […]

Review: Benizakura Distillery’s 9148, Kyoya Distillery’s Hinata

Review: Benizakura Distillery’s 9148, Kyoya Distillery’s Hinata

Two of the newest Japanese craft gins to hit the scene are 9148 from Sapporo’s Benizakura Distilley, and Hinata from Kyoya Distillery in Miyazaki Prefecture. Tonight we’re drinking both! Benizakura Distillery 9148 Recipe 0101 Review Full disclosure, both of the gins I’m drinking tonight I’ve […]


Product Releases

We’re getting more Fuji Sanroku Signature Blend

We’re getting more Fuji Sanroku Signature Blend

2018 hasn’t been the greatest year for Japanese whisky. While we’ve seen some new distilleries pop out new born whiskies, for the established players, things have been pretty gloomy. But finally, there’s some good news out of Shizuoka Prefecture. Kirin has announced that beginning August […]

Yamazaki Umeshu is getting a smoky cask-aged edition

Yamazaki Umeshu is getting a smoky cask-aged edition

Suntory may be running low on whisky from Yamazaki, but that probably leaves them with plenty of empty casks. They have now announced a new edition of their Yamazaki cask-aged umeshu. This one is not simply aged in Yamazaki casks, but charred Yamazaki casks. That should […]

Wakatsuru Saburomaru Distillery launching cask owner program

Wakatsuru Saburomaru Distillery launching cask owner program

The newly refurbished Saburomaru Distillery is looking for 100 people to become partial cask owners. For 26,000 yen, you’ll receive two bottles of whisky from Saburomaru roughly five years from now. They expect the new pot to head into a bourbon cask in August, then mature, […]

Taste Test: Japan’s Clear Beers

Taste Test: Japan’s Clear Beers

The clear drink fad currently happening in Japan isn’t stopping at soft drinks. Japan now has two clear beers: Suntory All-Free All-Time and Asahi’s Clear Craft. Bottoms up! Suntory All-Free All-Time As previously reported, this one was released on June 19. It’s 0% abv, zero […]

Nikka Black Deep Blend Extra Sweet in September

Nikka Black Deep Blend Extra Sweet in September

Nikka Black Deep Blend Extra Sweet looks to be the latest variation of budget-friendly blended whisky out of Nikka, slated for release on or around September 11. It has just popped up on Amazon JP for a 2,138 yen, so a 700 yen premium over […]