Osuzuyama Distillery is now Miyazaki prefecture’s first whisky distillery

Kuroki Honten, a Miyazaki prefecture-based maker of famous shochus like Nakanaka and Hyakunen no Kodoku, has announced their intention to enter the Japanese whisky and spirits market.

The onslaught of shochu makers breaking into the world of Western spirits continues. While the action we've seen thus far has been clustered in Kagoshima prefecture, this time we look to its neighbor, Miyazaki prefecture.

Kuroki Honten is one of the better-known shochu makers, with a history going back to 1885. If you've had a bit of shochu you've probably already had some of their drink -- Hyakunen no Kodoku (百年の孤独), Nakanaka (中々), Kiroku (㐂六), and Yamazaru (山猿) are some of their more famous brands.

Via their Facebook page, the company announced that on November 1, 2019, they were granted licenses to distill whisky and spirits at their Osuzuyama Distillery. In fact, judging by the pictures attached to the post, things are well underway -- they already have a pot still installed. While we've already seen gins coming out of Miyazaki, this is a first for whisky.

 

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令和元年11月1日 尾鈴山蒸留所 ウイスキー、スピリッツ製造免許取得 「新しい蒸留酒への思い」 この土地で私たちにしかできない焼酎を造ろうと日々努力を続けてまいりました。その志はこれからも変わりません。 そもそも焼酎とは日本で培われた発酵技術と伝来した蒸留技術が出会うことで生まれ、この土地で独自に発展してきたものです。 原材料の芋、麦、米も元を辿れば海を越えて伝わってきました。長い歴史を経て知名度や人気も少しずつ高まった現在ですが、今が完成形であるとは考えていません。 これからも歴史から学び続け、時代や環境の変化とともに挑戦 し変化し続けることで変わらぬ本質が生まれてくるのではないかと信じています。 発芽した穀物を原料に長期熟成させたウイスキーも さまざまな香りをまとったスピリッツも私たちの伝統技術とつながってこの土地から生まれる新しい蒸留酒として育てていきたいと思います。 土地を愛し、さらなる可能性を追求し続ける姿勢こそが 焼酎醸造家としての精神であると考えています。 尾鈴山蒸留所の挑戦をこれからも皆様に応援いただけますと幸いです。 #黒木本店 #尾鈴山蒸留所 #甦る大地の会 #本格焼酎 #焼酎 #酒 #宮崎 #百年の孤独 #中々 #㐂六 #日本 #農業 #山ねこ #shochu #sake #japan #miyazaki #drink #liquor #portrait #landscape #whisky#streetphotography #gin #spirits #agriculture #food #foodie

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The Osuzuyama Distillery was opened in 1998, and sits in the mountains of Miyazaki prefecture. It's about a 30-minute drive from Kuroki Honten's headquarters in Takanabe, Miyazaki, right on the Pacific coast. Of importance for whisky is the water source -- the Osuzuyama Distillery is located far upstream the river it pulls its water from, making the water very soft.

Hopefully they stick with the Osuzuyama name so we can avoid confusion over other Japanese whiskies using "Miya." Miyagikyo from Nikka and Miyazaki Honten's Sun Peace whisky come to mind.

No word yet on any products from them, but definitely stay tuned!

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