[Review] Saburomaru Distillery Limited Blended Malt Whisky

Whisky Review
Whisky Review
Saburomaru Distillery

The distillery’s limited edition blended malt whisky Batch.1 has been on sale at the Saburomaru distillery’s directly managed store “Reiwagura” since August 5 (Fri.), 2022. It is sold exclusively at the storefront of Reiwagura. Each customer can purchase up to two 500ml bottles.


1. Maker

Wakatsuru Shuzo Co.

Established 1862
Head office location 208 Saburomaru, Tonami, Toyama 939-1308
Owned distillerySaburomaru distillery

2. Distillery

Saburomaru distillery

Address 208, Saburomaru, Tonami city, Toyama 939-1308
Start of operation 1953 (renovated in 2016)

Founded in 1952, this is the only distillery in Hokuriku.
It obtained a license to produce whisky in 1952 amidst the postwar rice shortage. Since then, sake has been brewed in winter Whisky distilled only during summer The distillery brews 200 bottles of sake per year. They brew 200 bottles a year. Plans are underway to make 300 bottles in the future
Since the beginning, they have been committed to producing smoky whisky, using Islay peated malt and more recently Peated malt produced in Toyama The whisky is brewed with Islay peated malt and more recently with In order to preserve the natural flavor, no cooling filtration or coloring is used.

In 2018, we installed a state-of-the-art mash tun from Miyake Manufacturing.
In 2019, we collaborated with a local company, Oigo Seisakusho, to develop a cast pod still “ZEMON” to develop a cast pod still
In 2020, install one wooden vat fermenter.

The main difference from other distilleries is the world’s first cast pod still “ZEMON” The distillery uses the world’s first cast pod still, “ZEMON”
There are three main features.
(1) The casting method enables mold forming and quick delivery. Also, it is possible to add sufficient wall thickness at a low cost, which increases the service life of the main body.
(2) Free molding by the casting method allows for a variety of sake qualities. Also, by unitizing the parts, it is possible to replace only worn parts or expand the functions.
(3) Made of a copper-tin alloy containing about 90% copper and 8% tin. Tin is a high-grade metal that is traded at about three times the price of copper.
Tin has been used since ancient times mellow the taste of alcohol. It is said to be the most expensive metal in the world, and has been used for sake vessels and shochu coolers. ZEMON contributes to the production of high quality spirits through the dual effects of copper and tin. to the production of high quality spirits. It is also used as a cooler for sake and shochu.
Reference: Wakatsuru Sake Brewery official website

See also ↓ for information on the Sabromaru distillery.


3. Product name and photo

Blended malt limited to Saburomaru distillery
Blended malt limited to Saburomaru distillery

4. Characteristics

This blended malt whisky is a blend of the original malt whisky from the Sabromaru distillery and the original malt whisky from overseas. It has the smokiness that is characteristic of the Sabromaru distillery and the grain sweetness that is unique to malt, and is well harmonized with the overseas malt.

4-1. Tasting Notes

AromaHerbal, milk, peaty
TastePeachy sweet and sour, gentle peat
AftertasteMild peat followed by just the right amount of bitterness

4-2. Product Specifications

Alcohol content46% (with a slight alcohol content of 46%)
alcohol categoryBlended Malt Whisky
Cask type
Number of bottles sold
Suggested retail price3,850 yen (including tax)
Release dateAugust 5, 2022

5. Awards

No awards received at this time.

6. Price

6-1. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price

Product nameSanromaru Distillery Limited Blended Malt Whisky
Suggested retail price3,850 yen (including tax)

6-2. Resale price on Mercari

No resale on Mercari could be confirmed at this time. (*As of 9/6/2022)

6-3. Sold price on Yahoo! Auction

The winning bid on Yahoo! Auctions was Lowest 4,700 yen, Highest 5,000 yen, Average 4,850 yen.(*Statistics for the past 180 days from 9/6/2022)

6-4. Rakuten, Yahoo Shopping, Amazon

Currently, there seems to be no sales on mail-order sites. (*As of 9/6/2022)

6-5. Prices offered at BAR Shinkai

At “BAR Shinkai” operated by this site, we offer small quantities such as 1 glass, 45ml: 3,300 yen, 30ml: 2,200 yen, 15ml: 1,100 yen, etc.


7. Summary

Most of the blended whiskies released by the Saburomaru distillery have been blends of the Saburomaru distillery’s malt whisky and foreign-produced grain whisky.
This time, the blended malt whisky is a blend of the Saburomaru distillery’s malt whisky and malt whisky from overseas. Although it is limited to the distillery, it seems that each person can purchase up to two bottles. The capacity is slightly smaller at 500 ml, but more people may purchase it.

Since this is Batch.1, when Batch.2 or Batch3 is released in the future, it will probably be blended with more carefully selected malt whisky. It will be interesting to see how the flavor changes in the future.


A single cask distilled in the cast pod still “ZEMON” was released on August 28 at the “Hokuriku Coca-Cola Summer Festival” and became a hot topic.

Furthermore, a single malt whisky is scheduled to be released within this year. Now the time has finally come.

I am looking forward to seeing what kind of flavor it will have.

Please check out other articles about Saburomaru Distillery.




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".

Misato Ushiwataをフォローする
Japanese Whisky Dictionary