The Yamazaki Club holds its first premium seminar



June 13 (Saturday), despite the rainy weather, the Yamazaki Club holds its first premium seminar at Yamazaki Distillery. The seminar, is different from your normal factory tours and allows access to exclusive VIP-only rooms and areas within the distillery that the public has never seen.



The first part of the seminar is the Fujii Takahisa factory and distillery tour, the second part is the Master of whiskey seminar which is a luxurious two-part lecture by Sasaki Taichi who is a whisky specialist. The Yamazaki club members, (which consists of 9 lucky guests selected from amongst 3000 people that applied were able to participate in this first event.) A diverse mix of guests that arrived from all over the country.



The participants filled the guest room which has a stunning view of a fresh bamboo forest landscape that spread outside the large windows which is located behind the Yamazaki Distillery. You can feel a rich aura of nature within a variety of locations in the distillery. The chief executive of Yamazaki appeared to greet the guests and gave an outline of what is to come for the day.



The premium seminar started with a walking tour of the four new distillation kettles that were installed in 2013. The new stills are very similar to the kettle shape of the original that replaced the straight head type. The Yamazaki Distillery, founded in 1923 at that time had straight shaped stills. However, the realized that the size and shape of the kettle affects whisky flavor in every detail so they experimented with using different distillation kettles varieties."



The usual tour followed and guests entered the fermentation room where the tanks can be seen only through a window-lined barrier. A large tree tub arrangement in the room is the source of the warm air that seeps moisture and gives out a variety of scents such as fruity aroma and sweet and sour flavor. "The character of the whisky is determined by its ingredients and Yamazaki whisky is known to have its natural sweetness from its famous water. When allowed to stand by the addition of best waters of Yamazaki was warmed to barley malt can sweet wort. Than sweet watermelon It is about a little more sweet. Not only stainless steel tanks, is to use the old-fashioned wood tub, depending on activity of lactic acid bacteria that take corners Kioke, because the flavor can not be obtained only with a wooden tub is obtained. "  People of your participation, such as how the mash in the fermentation is bubbling in Kioke, while housed in a photograph a scene that can not be in quite the eye, we have listened to intently.

The distillation chamber distillation kettle-lined, humid heat such as sauna. "We distilled here mash having been subjected to fermentation. This is the kettle just beginning to distillation. It is by looks how you boiling mash is foamy high" With cheers of "many", it was simultaneously directed the camera to the kettle that Fujii factory length is pointed. "Alcohol in the first round of distillation called Hatsutamari to about 20 percent. This is alcohol content about 60% of whiskey obtained in the second distillation, called re-reservoir" Newborn whiskey called New pot is colorless and transparent. "Please, please try smelled the scent." And a sample that has been placed in the bottle was proffered. To smell the scent of new pot for the first time experience for many people, it is closer to the nose, seriously everyone tries Kokumo to store the aroma.



Finally to storage. Cool as a cool even in summer is in the dim storage. Here, there was a description of the barrel. "At Suntory, bourbon barrels made of white oak of the United States production, Hoggusuheddo, Puncheon, sherry butt which is made of common oak Spanish production, we are storing the whiskeys in the Japanese oak barrels and a variety of barrels produced in grosseserrata domestic . complex taste of Suntory whiskey, including Yamazaki, born by variety of whiskeys born from different barrels combine. Suntory is a rare whiskey maker in the world that has a barrel factory in-house. "


Upon exiting out of the reservoir, before manicured Japanese garden is the eye. While it is healed in green trees shining in clear weather, and went back to the guest room in the guidance of the Fujii plant. Day-to-day site clarity of Fujii plant unique to take command of the whiskey produced in, and was the state of also satisfied everyone for your participation in the commentary rich in expertise.




The second half of only three people have not yet been certified in Japan, "Master of whiskey ※" The premium lecture by Taichi Mr. Sasaki. Introduction and beer of whiskey in general, of the manufacturing process as compared to the shochu description, such as the principle of distillation, was commentary by using the chart. Height 195 cm or more, based on the dominating volleyball player as a representative of Japan, also narrative met with current is also active as a commentator of the game vivacity. Theoretical talk often lecture also went tempo well.



"In the distillery of the birthplace of single malt whiskey, Scotland, generally one of the distillery does not do that properly using multiple distillation kettle. But in Yamazaki Distillery, as various forms that you have seen in the first half of the tour I am using the distillation kettle. why. In Scotland, but there is a custom to buy and sell the whiskeys between the distillery, Yamazaki Distillery because it was the first time the distillery in Japan, but I had no choice but to divide made in-house . Now, to make classification and blending technology of its variety of whiskeys has been recognized worldwide. "

The detailed lecture also for barrel making. Especially about the scarcity of Japanese oak material to make an indispensable Japanese oak barrels to Yamazaki, itself was commentary along with the photo of when I visited the locality of Japanese oak. "When I say the origin of Japanese oak material, might be imagined a forest of Japanese oak, it is very rare tree that does not grow only about one to several hundred meters and when I actually went. Barrels material in the 100 years old and it is to be able to make, that 200 years large 径木 only. everyone I think from one tree and can many barrels? and I do not make only about a few barrels " People of your participation will roar once again, the voice of amazement went up.



'10, '20, And '50, whiskey itself also takes a long storage time. But if you think from the barrel building to be used for storage, further over a much longer time, Yamazaki it has been made.
Then, there is talk about the differences of taste derived from the barrel, it is time for the start of the finally the long-awaited tasting. In front of the people of participants, Panchon barrel whiskeys, sherry barrel whiskeys, Japanese oak barrel whiskeys, wine barrel whiskeys, Yamazaki 12-year and five tasting item has been prepared.

"In a normal seminar will be tasting the Yamazaki configuration whiskeys that are not put out. First of all from. Green apple like smell does not or Panchon. Shelley red fruit, grosseserrata I think you death oriental scent . Then, when the end to savor the Yamazaki '12, good balance, you should able again noticed in the taste. "

Then further, special Japanese oak that will not appear in any way to the seminar, including Sherry, four special tasting item has been served by surprise. From the people of the participants it was about leaking the voice of admiration of sigh.



To everyone all of the day participants, special souvenir is also available. Addition to the "Yamazaki 700ml Yamazaki Distillery limited label", "barrels story name into ballpoint pen", further Fujii plant itself was special Botorutagu 2 Tsuoo pass engraved with your name each and every participant. When Botorutagu are dealt, especially big cheer went up. It remains which is not Yara cold excitement, Fujii factory length, is performed commemorative photograph with Mr. Sasaki to conclude premium seminars.

"You can tour the distillery slowly, Fujii factory it is very glad to have been able to question directly to the length" I've participated, "I have been allowed to tasting items like a dream," and "expect, with everything more than expected did"



It your impressions from everyone as "very satisfied", is the first premium seminar, now that the very in certain significance. Fujii plant also "It was very glad to be able to talk directly with everyone that I am loved Yamazaki Koyonaku. Continue to strive to improve the quality, we would like to deliver a better whiskey to everyone", also Sasaki said "everyone, very hard and have been participating in the seminar, it was also seminars to be stimulating as his. acquaintance - it is talking with all means want to convey the depth of Yamazaki "towards friends, and I am loved Yamazaki on a daily basis it can be a variety of talk and everyone who is, it became a very happy day.

※ "Master of whiskey" is, Mamoru Mr. Tsuchiya of whiskey critic, the highest level title of the qualification system of whiskey that started from 2004. And wearing the correct knowledge of the whiskey manufacturing and culture, it was started for the purpose of development of human resources to information dissemination. Qualifications in order of level are three stages of "whiskey expert," "whiskey professional," "Master of whiskey", the highest level "Master of whiskey", is achieved by taking a paper examination, written examination, oral examination which includes blind tasting. In Japan, only three people have been certified to the master of whiskey. (July 2015 currently)

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