House of Suntory introduces a new whiskey
CHICAGO – Suntory Whiskey recently introduced a new whiskey, inspired by the wood from a “rare and demanding tree,” Mizunara, a Japanese oak and casks made with it are used in whisky making. Diverse grain types, as well as fermentation, distillation and maturation techniques, underpin Suntory’s legendary Art of Blending. This diversity enables Suntory to produce more than 100 different malt and grain whiskies at the Yamazaki, Hakushu and Chita distilleries and allows Suntory complete self-sufficiency in the creation of its blends.
Only a few Yamazaki whiskies have had the privilege of maturing in Mizunara casks, creating what is said to be one of the most uniquely flavored and distinctly Japanese whiskies in the world. For Suntory’s fourth Chief Blender Shinji Fukuyo, every creation is a new journey to achieve a balance of subtlety, refinement and complexity that is the hallmark of all Suntory whiskies. In his pursuit of true “Mizunara-ness,” he tasted a few hundred Mizunara whiskies and made selections with varying ages, from 18 years old and beyond. A very small portion exceed even 50 years of maturation, which give this limited edition an incomparable depth and lingering flavor.
Fukuyo knew from the start that the Yamazaki Mizunara 2017 Edition was not intended for a familiar, relaxing moment and wanted this whisky to be dramatic and unforgettable:“I wanted to reveal the whisky’s soul that is the Art of Mizunara—a heightened sense and awakened palate engaged through aromas and flavors never known before. Encountering it should be a moment of epiphany.” But even at 50 years and beyond, the top-note and after-taste aromas of Mizunara whiskies are generally still improving. This unique ability to support long-term aging affords endless opportunities to experience the evolution and refinement of Mizunara whiskies over time. The rich whiskey (96% proof) is priced at $1,000 a bottle and is encased in a wood box made of cask material used in its aging.
Black Fig Vodka® wins Double Gold at 2017 San Francisco World Spirits Competition
BOSTON – Black Fig Vodka® took home a Double Gold award recently at the 2017 San Francisco World Spirits Competition. The beverage, said to be the world’s only fig-infused vodka, received the Best Flavored Vodka Double Gold Medal at the 2017 San Francisco World Spirits Competition (SFWSC), a unanimous recognition by the 43 member judging panel that places the spirit among the finest products in the world.
More than one pound of California figs is naturally infused in every bottle. This process produces Black Fig’s golden amber hues and a natural sweetness that complements both traditional and unexpected cocktail recipes. On the palate, the 60-proof vodka demonstrates a subtle buttery and nutty texture with notes of honey and caramel followed by a rich, full finish.
“We couldn’t be more proud to receive Double Gold,” saysMichael Davidson, owner of Black Infusions, LLC, the company that produces Black Fig. “The unique balance of natural flavors is what sets Black Fig apart from the competition. It’s a versatile spirit with a broad range of appeal. It’s easily enjoyed on the rocks, as well as in a variety of craft cocktails.”
Black Fig is currently available in Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. Distribution is set to expand to seven more states by the end of 2017, including California, DC, Florida and Missouri. For distribution information and inquiries, visit www.BlackInfusions.com.
This year, SFWSC (www.sfspiritscomp.com) saw its largest turnout in history
with more than 2,100 entries from around the world. The 2017 judging panel
included top spirits experts Tony Abou-Ganim and David Wondrich, renowned Master-Mixologist and James Beard Award-winner, respectively. Every entry is blind-tested to ensure that each product is judged fairly and without bias.
The artisanal premium vodka is distilled from grain, naturally infused with
California figs, and bottled by hand in small batches. The 60-proof vodka is gluten- free and made without artificial sugars, flavors or colors.
It the first spirit produced by Black Infusions, LLC of Boston, Massachusetts and all the materials used in its production and packaging are made in America. For distribution information and cocktail recipes, visit http://www.BlackInfusions.com.
The truth – the whole truth – about a lovely pink gin
The Bitter Truth Bitters & Liqueurs in Germany brings PinkGin to the table, paying tribute to a product that began as a seaman’s breakfast, created to “rally sailors against the wiles of the ocean.”
If you think of gins you’ve had before, you’ll be surprised. This one is gentle and soft, less biting than many of the gins of Britain and even the U.S. It’s also a pretty pink color instead of the clear beverages we’ve been used to before.
You’ll taste juniper berries in this PinkGin, soft and gentle on the palate, but complex with hints of caraway, fennel and licorice and 40% ABV. Fruity and flavorful, it lends itself to creative cocktail-making. Visit www.the-bitter-truth.com/liqueurs/pink-gin/
Death’s Door Spirits takes its name from the most treacherous waterway in the Great Lakes – Death’s Door Passage which separates Washington Island in Lake Michigan from the Door County peninsula of the Wisconsin mainland.
A leader in the craft spirits movement, Death’s Door distills premium spirits from grain with a base that includes hard red winter wheat, corn and malted barley.
The company began as an economic development project with founder Brian Ellison working with neighbors to bring sustainable agriculture to their 22-sq. mile island’s economy. He worked with farmers to grow the organic hard red winter wheat and at first, made bread and other baked goods before moving to beer. Today, what began as five acres is 1,200.
The gin was the first product. Today, Death’s Door also makes vodka and white whiskey. For the gin, he uses a mix of wild juniper, coriander and fennel. The end result is a taste of all three botanicals – the juniper berries, coriander seeds and then the fennel seed for a soft finish. It undergoes three separate distillations. None of the botanicals are crushed or macerated, and it contains no citrus.
Located in Middleton, WI, the distillery, completed in 2012, is one of the region’s largest and has a capacity of more than 250,000 cases of finished product. In 2014, Nielsen reported that it was the top selling domestic gin in the U.S. Last year, new packaging – bottle made in the U.S. and ergonomically friendly to bartenders – was introduced. Visit www.deathsdoorspirits.com for more information.