The distillery founded in 1934 by Masataka Takesuru is the furthest North of the Japanese distilleries located on the island of Hokkaido.
This is roughly the same latitude as Vladivostok and is to be found in a mountainous region. With mountains on three sides and the Sea of Japan on the forth it is stated that Takesuru selected the site for its comparable geography to Scotland. The area also had a supply of peat.
However the average winter temperature is several degrees colder and the summer are likewise several degrees hotter than the Scottish climate this would result in a speeded up maturation process, nevertheless the geography is the closest you can come to Scotland in Japan.
The distillery also continues to remain loyal to its Scottish traditions and has invested in pollution control so that it can still operate its coal-fired pot stills similar to those that Takesuru would have worked with during his time in Scotland
The distillery started production in 1936.
In 1940 the Nikka whisky is released as a blended whisky
During 1952 the company changes its name to the Nikka Whisky Distilling Co Ltd.
At some point in 1984 the “Hokkaido” 12 year old single malt is released.
2001 sees Nikka join the Asahi Brewery Group.
Yoichi Distillery Bottlings
Hokkaido 12 Year Old 43% ABV
Yoichi No Age Statement 43%
Yoichi 10 Year Old 45% ABV
Yoichi 12 Year Old 45% ABV
Yoichi 12 Year Old Key Malts
(3 Bottlings - Woody & Vanillic. - Sherry & Sweet - Peaty & Salty,)
Yoichi 15 Year Old 45% ABV
Yoichi 20 Year Old 45% ABV
Yoichi Vintages 1986, 1987, 1988
Nikka Single cask various Vintages 1986,1987,1988,1990,1991
Genshu Single Cask 10 years old
Yoichi produces rich, peaty and masculine malt. The whisky gets its distinct aroma and body from direct heating distillation, in which the pot stills are heated with finely powdered natural coal--the traditional method that is hardly ever used today, even in Scotland
Nikka Scotch Combination Whiskies.
There is a long-standing tradition with Japanese companies of not trading with their rival due to the company loyalty that is prevalent in Japan. This means instead of combing fellow Japanese whisky in blends Scottish whisky is often selected to make combination malts and blends.
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