About Suntory Toki Whisky
In February 1899, Shinjiro Torii opened a store in Osaka, Japan that traded in imported wines. Within a decade, Torii began producing his own sweet grape wine called Akadama Port Wine, which became wildly popular throughout the country. In 1923, Torri — fascinated by whisky his entire life — decided to expand his business and began construction of the Yamazaki Distillery, Japan's first-ever whisky distillery.
Although inspired by traditional Scottish distilleries, Torii envisioned a uniquely Japanese approach to whisky and chose a location for his distillery that offered a climate and terrain that were completely different than those of Scotland. Nestled on the periphery of Kyoto, Yamazaki Distillery is situated at the confluence of three rivers — the Katsura, Uji and Kizu — that provide the warm, damp environment ideal for the production and maturation of whisky.
Fifty years after the construction of Yamazaki Distillery, Keizo Saji inherited his father's vision and constructed Suntory's second distillery. Situated amidst the deep forests of Mount Kaikomagatake in Japan's southern Alps, the Hakushu Distillery enjoys a unique microclimate as a result of being surrounded by nearly 6,000 varieties of plants and thousand-year-old granite rocks.
Suntory Toki Japanese Whisky is a unique marriage of whiskies from Hakushu and Yamazki distilleries, as well as Chita Distillery, a single grain distillery in Aichi Prefecture on the Pacific coast of Japan. While the majority of Suntory’s blends use malt whisky from Yamazaki as their main ingredient, Chief Blender Shinji Fukuyo wanted to try a new approach for Suntory Toki Japanese Whisky, utilizing Hakushu malt whisky aged in American white oak and Chita heavy-type grain whisky as the blend’s two pillars. Finally, Fukuyo adds both American white oak-aged and Spanish oak-aged malt whisky from Yamazaki, providing the blend with even more flavor and complexity.
“By pairing these seemingly dissimilar but deeply accordant whiskies, Fukuyo’s insight overturned the old relationship between malt and grain and created a blend that is both groundbreaking and timeless,” says Suntory.
Suntory Toki Japanese Whisky has a clear golden color and aromas of fresh basil, green apple and clover honey. The palate is filled with bittersweet citrus fruits, such as grapefruit and green grapes, as well as pungent herbs like peppermint, thyme and rosemary. The finish, which is subtle and slightly sweet, leaves an impression of vanilla and ginger which lingers endlessly.
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About Japanese Whisky
Although maybe not be the first Spirit you would think of when Japan is mentioned; the Japanese make one of the best types of whisky in the world. It’s heavily influenced by scotch but with smoother and delicate notes.
The history of the Japanese whisky is not even a century old, but in this short time, the Japanese blended and single malts have taken over the world by storm and can easily go against their whisk(e)y counterparts from across the globe.
Check out our impressive selection of Japanese whiskies, find your new favorite in the best Japanese whiskies bottles under $200, or explore our treasury of rare & hard to find Japanese whiskies.