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HomeWhiskeyShirakawa, One Of The World’s Rarest Japanese Whiskies, Rediscovered

Shirakawa, One Of The World’s Rarest Japanese Whiskies, Rediscovered

A collaboration between Tomatin Distillery and Takara Shuzo has led to the rediscovery of one of many rarest Japanese whiskies of all time … the Shirakawa 1958.

And now, the manufacturers are set launch the uncommon, 1958 single malt from the misplaced Japanese distillery of Shirakawa, the one official single malt bottling ever from the ghost distillery, in addition to one of many earliest recognized single classic Japanese whiskies ever bottled.

For a little bit of historical past, the Shirakawa Distillery operated practically 65 years earlier than being demolished in 2003. A press release from Tomatin and its dad or mum firm Takara Shuzo defined that a lot of Shirakawa’s historical past is misplaced within the mists of time.

A collaboration between Tomatin Distillery and Takara Shuzo has led to the rediscovery of one of many rarest Japanese whiskies of all time … the Shirakawa 1958. (picture by way of Tomatin)

And although its historical past spans from 1939 to 2003, the heyday of the distillery was the Fifties and ‘60s. Solely a handful of paperwork since 1947 (when Takara purchased the distillery) exist.

Archivists on the whisky maker have discovered the defunct distillery’s oral historical past has all however disappeared as nicely. The final remaining fragments to construct a portrait of Shirakawa are the liquid shares of malt whisky that survived.

Shirakawa Distillery was based within the metropolis of the identical identify in Fukushima prefecture, north of Tokyo, in 1939, by Daikoku Budoshu.

Simply close to the Abukuma River and Komine Fort, Shirakawa Distillery consisted of a patchwork of wooden and mortar buildings of various sizes. In 1947, the distillery was bought by Takara Shuzo Co. and it was renovated for the manufacturing of wine and brandy.

The few firm information remaining present that the manufacturing of malt whisky began in 1951. Its malt whisky manufacturing falls into three intervals: 1951 to 1957, 1958 to 1966 and 1968 to 1969.

The one remaining single malt of Shirakawa is from 1958, made at the start of the second interval of whisky making on the distillery. It was throughout this time that the distillery was working with home malted barley, and the fermentation was elevated to 5 days and the distillation befell in twin copper pots.

The spirit was collected at 73.1-57.1% ABV, a large center minimize, making for a mean nonetheless power of 66.7%. Domestically made 350-liter casks from Tohoku and Hokkaido Mizunara (Japanese oak) have been used for maturation.

Takara Shuzo’s flagship whisky model was and nonetheless is “King Whisky.”

A lot of the merchandise bought as whisky in Japan till the early Eighties have been of this selection, and all of the whisky produced at Shirakawa was destined for use within the “King Whisky” mix.

And by the point malt whisky started to make its approach into the market, Takara Shuzo’s focus shifted to shochu, a transparent distilled beverage. In consequence, Shirakawa was by no means launched by the corporate as a single malt.

Via the Seventies, Takara Shuzo Co. targeted on top quality shochu, and turned away from whisky altogether.

By the early 2000s, the Shirakawa Manufacturing unit was on its approach out, quickly closed and the buildings demolished.

The Shirakawa 1958 single malt set, from this collaboration with Tomatin, will are available in a 700mL bottle and clocks in at 49% ABV.

The distiller’s notes present that on the nostril, it has oak-driven aromas of marzipan, candied pineapple, and orange liqueur, in addition to floral and woody spices. The style options notes of apple and lime curd with white chocolate. Its end is comfortable with a nuttiness, gentle spice and a contact of smoke.

To register your curiosity for extra info or to pre-order a bottle, try


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