New Tenjaku Japanese Whisky Comes To American Retail - The Whiskey Wash

New Tenjaku Japanese Whisky Comes To American Retail

By Nino Marchetti / January 15, 2020

The ever increasing popularity of Japanese whisky among American consumers has led to explosive growth in the category, but also contributed to highly publicized shortages among brands large and small. This leaves plenty of opportunity for new labels to sneak in and try to grab market share, and one of the latest is known as Tenjaku Japanese Whisky.

Tenjaku Japanese Whisky, according to those behind it, is a blend put together under the supervision of master distiller Kenji Watanabe, who has experience in the Japanese whisky and winemaking world from the 1990s and throughout the 2000s. He brings together unprocessed whiskies said to be made from “locally sourced grains” (mash bill of 86% corn and 14% barley) and high quality natural spring water known for its mineral content that’s drawn from 250 meters below a nearby mountain range and filtered through porous volcanic rock.

“The excitement and interest in the Japanese Whisky category in the U.S. is enormous with over 40% growth in 2018 and we expect similar if not greater growth to be reported for 2019,” said Craig Kodish, Managing Director of Tenjaku USA, in a prepared statement. “We’re managing this as a craft brand with heritage and the legacy of a revered master distiller.”

Tenjaku Japanese Whisky

Tenjaku Japanese Whisky (image via Tenjaku)

As it stands now plans call for Tenjaku to be available in 33 domestic markets at a price point of around $40 per 750 ml bottle. It is an 80 proof expression and you’ll find official tasting notes for it below. It should be noted as well it sports on the front label the Japanese characters for the skylark (hibari), “the much-loved herald of spring in the East and West.” It is said by the producer that this whisky, “like the clear, exquisite song of a small bird,” features “an agreeably pure, mellow flavor.”

  • Color: Clear amber
  • Nose: Faint smoky accent. Sweet aroma, redolent of pear and dried fruit.
  • Palate: A slightly edgy attack. Well-rounded and mellow.
  • Finish: Slightly spicy. A long finish with a hint of white oak and a spreading sweetness.

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