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First commercial whisky production was in 1924 upon the opening of the country's first distilleryYamazaki. There are several companies producing whisky in Japan, but the two best-known and most widely available are Suntory and Nikka.


Two of the most influential figures in the history of Japanese whisky are Shinjiro Torii who is a founder of Suntory and Masataka Taketsuru who found Nikka. Torii decided to build the first Japanese whisky distillery in Yamazaki, a suburb of Kyoto, an area so famous for its excellent water. Torii hired Masataka Taketsuru as a distillery executive. Taketsuru had studied the art of distilling in Scotland, and brought this knowledge back to Japan in the early 1920s. Whilst working for Suntory he played a key part in helping Torii establish the Yamazaki Distillery. In 1934 he left Suntory to form his own company—Nikka. In this new venture he established the Yoichi distillery in Hokkaido. 

Since then, Japan has become the world’s third largest producer of whisky behind Scotland and USA. Japanese whisky first won a major award in 2001. Following this, Japanese whiskies have won two of the most prestigious prizes at the World Whisky Awards in 2008 – the Yoichi 20 years old won Best Single Malt and the Hibiki 30 years old won Best Blended Whisky.

We have an extensive selection of Japanese Whiskey from small local distilleries to award winning Suntory and Nikka whiskies. Please enjoy the craftsmanship of Japanese whisky to complete HINATA ramen experience.

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