[Nikka Whisky] Information on new strategy & release of “The Nikka Nine Decades”, a product commemorating the 90th anniversary of Nikka Whisky’s founding

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Nikka WhiskyYoichi DistilleryMiyagikyo Distillery

Nikka Whisky, celebrating its 90th anniversary, introduces new concept, capital increase decision, and details of 90th anniversary products.


1. 90th Anniversary Initiatives

New communication concept “Whisky for Enjoying Life”

The new concept was created to encourage people to enjoy life itself through whisky’s rich individuality and diverse ways of enjoying it. Based on this concept, we will propose to our customers the unique appeal of Nikka Whisky and the various ways to enjoy whisky.


  1. A series of venues where customers can experience the concept will be launched in countries around the world from July onward.
  2. Appointment of Masaharu Fukuyama as special ambassador for Japan
  3. Capital investment of 6 billion yen to expand production

1.in Tokyo from July to December in a concept bar in Tokyo. Plans to sell Nikka Whisky cocktails, exhibits, and merchandise, etc. Similar events are planned overseas from July onward.

2. The “Nikka Whisky Special Ambassador in Japan” for the “Nikka Whisky in Japan” event will be Masaharu Fukuyama. He will be used in future advertising and sales promotions to convey the appeal of Nikka Whisky.

3. In the “Nikka Whisky Japan Special Ambassador” section, Nikka Whisky will spend approximately 6 billion yen this year to expand its production facilities in order to ensure a stable supply of domestically produced whisky, for which demand will continue to increase in the future.
In addition to the construction of a new barrel storage facility at the Tochigi factory, which will be operational from September of this year, the design of new storage facilities at the Yoichi and Miyagikyo Distilleries will be started and barrels will be purchased. With the barrel storage facility at the Tochigi plant now in operation, storage capacity will increase by 10% over 2021.

To date, we have invested approximately 6 billion yen from 2015 to 2017 and 6.5 billion yen from 2019 to 2021 to strengthen Nikka Whisky’s production system. We will continue to invest in facilities to build a long-term stable supply system for domestically produced whisky.

Before the price of whisky rose, Yoichi and Miyagikyo were in short supply. Nikka owns various production plants, but will the expansion of storage facilities enable a stable supply without changing production capacity?


A special blended whisky will be sold to commemorate the 90th anniversary.

The original whiskies used are

  • Yoichi malt from 1945
  • Malt from the soon-to-be-established Miyagikyo Distillery
  • Grain from the Moji factory and Satsumasa Distillery
  • Ben Nevis malt
  • Café Grain and Café Malt
  • “Discovery Series” aromatic yeast malts, etc.

are being used.

The theme is diversity and lore.
The design symbolizes Nikka Whisky pioneering the times.

The diversity of the skills that have been passed down from generation to generation, and the diversity of the original sake that has been produced.
The product design reflects the unparalleled individuality of Nikka Whisky.
When you open the heavy wooden box, you will see the signatures of the eight previous blenders, from the first master blender, Masataka Taketsuru, to the present day, on the mirror inside the door. The bottle of THE NIKKA, designed to resemble the overlapping collars of a kimono, expresses the depth of a blended product.
On the front side, the name of the bottle is simply written, and on the back side, Roman numerals indicating the nine Decades and the venerable Nikka emblem are engraved in “Edo carving®,” a fusion of traditional craftsmanship and sandblasting techniques.
The engraving of the two sides of the front and back is extremely difficult and involves a high level of craftsmanship.
On the seal, 18 nine-sided squares are arranged on a checkerboard pattern that represents the individuality of the six distilleries/factories in six different colors, expressing a beautifully harmonized blend.

*Edo carving® is a registered trademark of Matsuura Blast.

Reference: Nikka Whisky official website


2-1. Tasting Notes

Comment by Chief Blender Hiromi Ozaki

A grand challenge that transcends the concept of age.

The 90 years that Nikka Whisky has walked is expressed as a single whisky.

This unprecedented challenge required extremely precise blending techniques and creative thinking.

The original brewing process that Nikka Whisky has been accumulating since its establishment The number of original whiskies accumulated since the founding of the company has reached a vast number, and the age of the whiskies has been carefully blended to create a single whisky.

The age gap is nearly 90 years. The most outstanding ones were selected and combined,

We have found the optimum solution for the balance from a bird’s eye view, and have created a large, rich, broad and deep

We aimed to create a harmony that is rich in breadth and depth.
The backbone of the blend is built on a malt base. The peatiness of the Yoichi malt and

The sweet aroma of new oak, the fruity taste of Miyagikyo malt, and the fruitiness brought by the sherry casks.

And Ben Nevis malt, which has been an integral part of Nikka Whisky’s history.

Ben Nevis malt, which has been an integral part of Nikka Whisky’s history. Smoothly connecting these characteristics is the rich, full-bodied

The rich café grains and café malts smoothly connect these characteristics. The Moji factory and the Satsumasa Distillery produce grains,

Moji factory and the Satsumasa Distillery are made to stand out from the rest.
We have inherited 90 years of challenges, and we will continue to take on new challenges in the same way as our predecessors.

We must continue to take on the same challenges as our predecessors. Thinking of Nikka Whisky’s history and future,

We hope that you will enjoy this whisky while thinking about Nikka Whisky’s history and future.

Tasting Notes


Dense sweetness like apple pie and raisins, toasty aroma of barrel aging, mild smokiness, nostalgic retro aroma like antique furniture, and a complex layering of various aromas make you feel as if you are in a cellar where the original whiskey is quietly sleeping.


Based on a rich, thick oakiness, it has a spicy feel reminiscent of cinnamon, roasted nuts, dark chocolate richness, peat bitterness, accompanied by sweetness like apricot jam and maple syrup, and a warmth that is like being in front of a fireplace.


A heavy, pleasant bitterness with mild peat, deep richness and sweet-sourness lingers for a long time.

Reference: Nikka Whisky official website

2-2. Product Specifications

Sake type Blended whisky
Year of distillation The oldest is Yoichi malt from 1945
Number of bottlings 2,000 bottles (1,000 in Japan, 1,000 outside Japan)
Strength 48%
Volume 700ml
Reference retail price 330,000 yen (tax included)
Manufacturer Nikka Whisky

Lastly: Recommended Books on Japanese Whisky

If you want to learn more about Japanese whisky, which is a global trend, we highly recommend these books.

(1).Whisky Galore Vol.29 December 2021 issue

In the December 2021 issue of Whisky Galore, published by the Whisky Culture Research Institute, we report on 11 Japanese craft distilleries, including some that are open to the public for the first time, under the title of “Japanese Whisky Craft Frontline,” the first of three consecutive issues. Why did the popularity of Japanese whisky and the craft boom occur? We will examine with interviews. Chichibu Distillery / Chichibu No.2 Distillery / Mars Shinshu Distillery / Mars Tsunuki Distillery / Kanosuke Distillery / Hioki Distillery / Ontake Distillery / Osuzuyama Distillery / Kaikyo Distillery / Hanyu Distillery / Konosu Distillery

(2). Japanese Whisky as an Education for Business

This is a book written by Mamoru Tsuchiya, a world-famous whisky critic and representative of the Whisky Culture Research Institute, titled “Japanese Whisky as a Culture that Works for Business” .
The book covers the basics of whisky, the introduction of whisky to Japan, the birth of Japanese whisky, advertising strategies and the rise of Japanese whisky, and the current rise of craft distilleries. This is a book that summarizes Japanese whisky in a very easy to understand way.

(3). Whisky and I (Masataka Taketsuru)

Masataka Taketsuru, the founder of Nikka Whisky, devoted his life to brewing whisky in Japan. This is a revised and reprinted version of the autobiography of a man who simply loved whisky and talked about himself. The book vividly depicts the days when he went to Scotland alone to study as a young man and overcame many hardships to complete Japanese whisky, as well as his companion, Rita.

(4). A Letter of Challenge from a New Generation Distillery

Launching in 2019. With the world experiencing an unprecedented whisky boom, what were the managers of craft distilleries thinking and what were their thoughts as they took on the challenge of making whisky? This book tells the stories of 13 craft distillery owners, including Ichiro Hido of Venture Whisky, famous for his Ichirose Malt, who inspired the birth of craft distilleries in Japan.

(5). Whiskey Rising

This is the Japanese version of Whisky Risng, published in the US in 2016, with much updated content. Not only does it describe the history of Japanese whisky in detail, but it also includes data on all the distilleries in Japan, including the craft distilleries that have been founded in recent years. The book also includes descriptions of the legendary bottles that have been released, as well as information on bars where Japanese whisky can be found.

Misato Ushiwata

Born in Fukushima Prefecture.
She attended a university in Tokyo, where she studied brewing and other sciences while translating articles for the "Japanese Whisky Dictionary".

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