Suntory recently announced that it would once again be producing bottles of Hakushu 12 Year, a single malt whisky that has been unavailable since June of 2018.
Hakushu was initially released in 1994 and was Suntory’s second single malt, following the release of their flagship whisky Yamazaki. But due to increased demand for Japanese whiskies a few years ago, the company put a stop to production of Hakushu.
To produce the whisky, Hakushu aged non-peated malts in American oak and sherry casks, finishing it off with a peated malt aged in American oak casks. The result, according to Suntory, is a crisp, full-bodied sip with fragrances of jasmine and green apple. This current batch has apparently been aging for the past decade, waiting to be bottled.
The Hakushu Distillery was opened in 1973, at the foot of Mt. Kaikoma and was nicknamed the “Forest Distillery” for its natural surroundings. Suntory was able to utilize spring water from the Southern Alps and peat to allow them to make a much different expression than what they were bottling at their nearby Yamazaki Distillery.
Suntory states that, although quantities of Hakushu 12 Year are limited right now, they expect a stable supply to allow them to bring it back long term. For the time being, a limited quantity of bottles will be released on March 30, 2021 in Japan, with an SRP of ¥8,500 (about $82 USD).
Of note with this release is that, on the packaging, the brand is making use of handmade Echizen Japanese paper as the label, with the letters on it being colored green to reflect the distillery’s nickname.
Suntory also recently announced the May release of Hibiki Blossom Harmony 2021 and Yamazaki Single Malt Whisky Limited Edition 2021, two variations on whiskeys in their regular range of expressions.