Only The Luckiest Get To Savour This Exclusive Yamazaki

Have a sip of Yamazaki's exclusive 55-year-old single malt whisky.
Thursday 6 February 2020
Do you have what it takes to savour the exclusive Yamazaki 55-year old? Photo:

Calling all collectors and lovers of whisky: Japan’s Suntory is releasing a limited edition 55-year-old Yamazaki single malt whisky.

The oldest version of Yamazaki ever unveiled by the premium whisky maker, the spirit is matured in a mix of white and Mizunara oak casks since the 1960s. The edition is described by Suntory’s chief blender, Shinji Fukuyo, as being, “sweet and woody, with a mature, fruity aroma and long aftertaste.”

Fukuyo adds that since whisky flavours don’t typically change much after 30 years, the barrels were periodically moved to cooler locations so the maturing process slowed. This helps give the whisky a more nuanced character. The reddish-amber drink will be sold in a made-in-Japan crystal bottle, with the imprinted “55” lined in gold leaf.

Each bottle will be personalised, with the buyer’s name printed on the label. This adds a special touch, and hopefully discourages reselling, which Suntory has strictly prohibited.

Of course owning the exclusive Yamazaki 55-year old requires a certain amount of money. The bottle is selling at ¥3,000,000, which is about USD28,000. This is actually quite a good value, considering that in 2018, a bottle of their 50-year-old Yamazaki was sold at auction for more than USD300,000.

And there is one other catch: it would require some effort and luck to get your hands on this exclusive release.

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As Japan’s whiskey shortage continues to plague connoisseurs, Suntory Holdings has announced plans to release a limited edition 55-year-old Yamazaki single malt whiskey. Adding to its lauded line up of spirits, the latest iteration is now the oldest Yamazaki whiskey, passing the 50-year-old limited edition Yamazaki sold for ¥1 million JPY (approximately $9,168 USD) back in 2005. Limited to 100 bottles, the 55-year-old Yamazaki will be priced at ¥3 million JPY (approximately $27,504 USD) and buyers will be chosen by lottery. The oldest version of Yamazki single malt whiskey is produced at Japan’s first malt whiskey distillery in Osaka, and is matured in mizunara and white oak casks. According to Suntory Chief Blender, Shinji Fukuyo, the 55-year-old spirit is sweet and woody, with a mature, fruity aroma and long aftertaste. As many Japanese brewing and distilling groups have turned to whiskey blends without age statements, Suntory is now looking to maintain its reputation as a premium manufacturer. Also dealing with depleted stocks after an expected surge in popularity of single malts, Kengo Torii, head of Suntory’s Whiskey Division, said, “We were concerned that we had not been able to deliver anything new for a long time regarding the Yamazaki brand.” #suntory #suntorywhisky #suntorywhiskey #yamazaki #yamazaki55

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To get your hands on one of the 100 bottles available, you would need to enter a lottery via this dedicated website for The Yamazaki 55 Years. Entry opens on 5 February 2020 at 9am and closes at 8:59am on 14 February 2020. It will be shipped in June, before the 2020 Summer Olympics kick off in Tokyo.

The lottery is free to enter, but you’ll need a Japanese postal address for Suntory to send the whisky to. The lucky winners would then be given the chance to own a bottle of the good stuff.

Source: The Japan Times, Reuters