To mark the historic anniversary, House of Suntory presents new limited edition whisky specialties to celebrate the Japanese craftsmanship at Suntory distilleries and the meticulous art of blending.
Limited Edition Yamazaki 18 YO Mizunara & Yamazaki 12 YO 100th Anniversary Edition
Limited Edition Hakushu 18 YO Peated Malt & Hakushu 12 YO 100th Anniversary Edition
The 100th anniversary is an important milestone for the history of Suntory, but also for the entire Japanese spirits culture. Yamazaki Distillery is Japan’s first and oldest malt whisky distillery and was created in 1923 by Suntory founder Shinjiro Torii.
Inspired by traditional Scotch whisky, he is said to have chosen Yamazaki at the foot of Mount Tennozan as the location for his distillery because of its quality water sources and natural setting that is ideal for whisky making.
The Yamazaki bottlings are considered the flagship of the house. Shinjiro Torii is known as a pioneer of Japanese whisky and for his art of blending.
The result: globally recognized creations crafted from Japanese ingredients by master artists of the House of Suntory and embodying the spirit of Japan.
100 Years of Yamazaki: The Birthplace of Japanese Whisky
House of Suntory honors the birthplace of Japanese whisky by celebrating the pioneering roots of one of the world’s finest whiskies in the place that Shinjiro Torii chose to begin the illustrious journey of Japanese whisky.
Fifth generation Chief Blender Shinji Fukuyo has returned to the savory roots of what defines Yamazaki Single Malt: deep, complex and layered flavors with notes of fruit and mizunara.
Selections range from Yamazaki Distiller’s Reserve to 12, 18 and 25 year old whiskies, all containing carefully blended components aged in American, Spanish and Japanese Mizunara oak.
Limited Edition Yamazaki 18 YO Mizunara from the Japanese oak barrel
The 100th Anniversary Limited Edition: This Yamazaki Mizunara Single Malt consists of carefully selected malt whiskies, all aged exclusively in Mizunara casks for a minimum of 18 years, and created in honor of Suntory Whisky’s centenary.
The result showcases the rare, distinctive beauty of Mizunara Oak, considered Yamazaki’s signature ‘finisher’, bringing unique Japanese character and elegance.
Tasting notes: Limited Edition Suntory Yamazaki 18 YO Mizunara
This Yamazaki Mizunara Single Malt consists of carefully selected malt whiskies, all of which have been aged exclusively in Mizunara casks for a minimum of 18 years. It was created to honour the centenary of the House of Suntory.
At the first tasting, it was noted that the young liquid in the Mizunara cask had a dominant flavor and aroma. While aging in Japan’s four distinctive seasons and in the Yamazaki region, determined blenders historically found a balance of maturation and harmonious blending that tempered the force of the Mizunara character.
The whiskies are now matured until they can acquire the characteristic Japanese spiciness and the incense-like aroma of sandalwood and agarwood.
Colour: reddish amber
Nose: Rich and elegant top notes of dark cherry and ripe peach, with hints of cinnamon and nutmeg.
Palate: Subtle spice with undertones of Japanese incense.
Finish: Long and lingering, accented with clove, sandalwood and hints of dried coconut.
Alcohol content: 48% vol.
Limited Edition Suntory Yamazaki 12 YO 100th Anniversary Edition
For the 100th anniversary, Suntory presents the twelve-year Yamazaki Single Malt. Like the regular Suntory Yamazaki 12 YO, this is bottled with an alcohol content of 43 percent.
The Limited Edition differs in the label design.
Tasting notes: Suntory Yamazaki 12 YO 100th Anniversary Edition
This limited edition Yamazaki 12 bottling pays homage to Suntory’s unique approach to design, bringing “Monozukuri” craftsmanship to life and enshrining it as part of Japanese culture. This tireless pursuit of quality, ingenuity and expressiveness also inspired the design of this limited anniversary bottling.
The bottle design for Yamazaki 12 YO pays homage to Yamazaki, the birthplace of Japanese whisky. The illustration shows the legendary distillery in deep copper tones from a low angle, looking up.
“This perspective reminds us to always keep our feet on the ground and pay homage to our founder Shinjiro Torii’s dream of creating whisky blessed with the riches of Japanese nature and craftsmanship.”
Aroma: Ripe plum, peach, vanilla.
Taste: coconut, butter, deep sweetness.
Finish: Sweet vanilla, woodiness, pleasant long finish.
Alcohol content: 43% vol.
Limited Edition Hakushu 18 YO Peated Malt
The 100th Anniversary Limited Edition Hakushu 18 YO Peated Single Malt consists of carefully selected malt whiskies, all aged in different casks for at least 18 years, and created in honor of Suntory’s centenary.
The term ‘peated’ is most commonly associated with Scotch whiskies, but this bottling reveals a different breed of peated whisky – one dubbed ‘Japanese Smoky’. Refined and elegant, this Hakushu Peated Malt offers a new take on peated whisky.
The smoke here is less strong, never dominant and rather complex and smooth in the typical Japanese style. What stands out is the flavour balance – a spicy, peppery welcome, a slow wave of clean smoke that deepens while revealing its herbaceous notes and green-fruity undertones.
The bottle design features dark green nuances and light gold touches reflecting the green and the smoky yet delicate flavours of the whisky.
Colour: Shiny Gold
Aroma: green apple, jasmine. Soft & sweet smoky.
Taste: biscuit, vanilla.
Finish: Sweet & smooth smoke. Relatively dry.
Alcohol content: 48% vol.
Limited Edition Hakushu 12 YO 100th Anniversary Edition
Hakushu 12 YO Single Malt consists of carefully selected malt whiskies, all aged for a minimum of 12 years in different casks and created in honor of Suntory Whisky’s centenary.
This limited-edition Hakushu 12 bottling pays homage to Suntory’s unique approach to design, bringing “Monozukuri” craftsmanship to life and enshrining it as part of Japanese culture.
This tireless pursuit of quality, ingenuity and expressiveness also inspired the design of this limited anniversary bottling. The illustration on the bottle shows the Hakushu Distillery in soft shades of green that symbolize the surrounding forest. It depicts Shinjiro Torii’s dream of creating a whiskey blessed with the riches of Japanese nature and craftsmanship that continues today.
Aroma: Lively with top notes of sage, ripe green apple and hints of ripe pineapple.
Palate: Complex smoke revealing notes of herbs, grapefruit and acacia honey.
Finish: Clear smoke lingering with undertones of fresh green citrus.
Alcohol content: 43% vol.
Hakushu-Whisky: The green Japanese Whisky
Hakushu Whisky from Suntory’s distillery, established in 1973 and nestled deep in the Kaikomagatake mountain forest, is a delicious, slightly smoky single malt whisky with herbal notes.
Coming straight from the pristine forests, soft and clear waters and mountains of the southern Japanese Alps, it’s no wonder Hakushu is a ‘green and clear’ whisky. Keizo Saji, the second master blender, realized his dream with Hakushu.
The unique taste created during the four seasons at high altitude is praised by whisky connoisseurs around the world. The Hakushu whiskies invigorate the palate and free the senses with their crisp and lively taste.
Hakushu – History & Features
In 1973, on Yamazaki’s 50th anniversary, the Hakushu Distillery was opened in the middle of the forests of Mount Kaikomagatake.
Located in the southern Japanese Alps, the distillery is one of the highest in the world and has exceptionally pure water for their whisky.
In order to remain true to the motto “coexisting with nature”, a bird sanctuary was founded around the distillery, which is now home to over 50 bird species.
Yamazaki 12 YO 100 Years & Hakushu 12 YO 100 Years are available from selected retailers (e.g. Vinothek St. Stephan or Julius Meinl am Graben in Vienna).
The limited special bottlings Yamazaki 18 YO & Hakushu 18 YO are only available from selected restaurateurs in Vienna, Salzburg, Tyrol and Vorarlberg.
House of Suntory
Since 1923, Suntory has been known as a pioneer of Japanese whisky and for its art of blending. Founder Shinjiro Torii established Japan’s first malt whisky distillery in Yamazaki. Suntory’s legacy was carried on by Torii’s son and second Master Blender, Keizo Saji, who founded other distilleries including Hakushu.
House of Suntory has been awarded Distiller of the Year four times (2010, 2012, 2013, 2014) at the International Spirits Challenge in London, UK. Suntory whiskies are subtle, refined and complex. The portfolio includes Yamazaki, Hakushu, Chita, Kakubin, Hibiki, Suntory Whisky Toki and Ao. House of Suntory’s portfolio also includes Japanese craft gin Roku and Japanese vodka Haku.
Crafted from Japanese ingredients by the master blenders of the House of Suntory, Roku Gin and Haku Vodka represent the nature and spirit of Japan. This year, Suntory Whisky celebrates one hundred years of whisky innovation – an important milestone not only for the brand’s history, but for Japanese spirits culture as a whole.
On the occasion of the historic birthday, House of Suntory presented the new, limited whisky specialties on June 15, 2023 in Vienna’s Park Hyatt Livingroom to celebrate the Japanese craftsmanship in Suntory’s distilleries and the careful art of blending.
Zoran Peric (international Yamazaki Brand Ambassador) presented the exclusive House of Suntory Limited Editions 2023 as part of a guided tasting together with the new Brand Ambassador House of Suntory, Pauline Scholz.
House of Suntory will continue its centenary campaign through the end of 2023.