At the beginning of this year, Amanda & I committed to taking a few trips to continue learning about whiskey. Our goal has always been to make the best tasting, traditional single malt stateside. In recent years the Japanese single malts have been winning top spots in many of the international awards. For this reason, Amanda arranged to visit many of the Japanese distilleries with an interpreter to see if we could learn anything new.


Suntory 2


Between Osaka and Kyoto we visited the Suntory Distillery, famous for their Yamazaki Single Malt. We then traveled to Hokkaido, Japan’s northern most Island, to see the coal fired stills of Nikka. Finally, at the base of Mount Fuji we toured Kirin’s Fuji Gotemba Distillery. Their water source comes from the mountain’s snowmelt filtered through its volcanic strata.



Nikka Coalfire


There’s exactness to the work preformed at these distilleries. Flames are controlled within a few degrees Celsius. Soft water is valued for its clarity and mouthfeel. And each carefully selected region monitors the effect of the changing season on their whiskey. All this data and passion is exactly what Amanda and I were looking for coming from our creative and scientific backgrounds.




There’s so much more I’d like to share about Japan, but I’ll save it for Amanda’s upcoming post.  Until then, I can’t wait to bring what we’ve learned back home, and start small scale testing!

Thank y’all for the support,