SAKURAO B&D plans to open “SAKURAO YOSHIWA WHISKY PARK (tentative name)”, a theme park with a whisky distillery attached

Sakurao Distillery

SAKURAO B&D announced plans to open “SAKURAO YOSHIWA WHISKY PARK (tentative name),” a theme park with a scenic whisky distillery.

The other day, we posted a news article titled “SAKURAO B&D, operator of the Sakurao Distillery, to build a second distillery on the site of Enchanted Village“, and as a follow-up, we have now received an official release announcement from Sakurao Brewery & Distillery Co.

“SAKURAO YOSHIWA WHISKY PARK (tentative name),” a new whisky distillery will be established on the site of the “Enchanted Village” in Yoshiwa, located in the mountains of Hatsukaichi City, Hiroshima Prefecture. The total investment will be several billion yen. Construction is scheduled to be completed in the fall of 2025.

Please click here for the previous article.


1. What is SAKURAO YOSHIWA WHISKY PARK (tentative name)?

SAKURAO B&D will open “SAKURAO YOSHIWA WHISKY PARK (tentative name),” a new whisky distillery on the site of “Yoshiwa Enchanted Village,” which closed at the end of March this year, 2023.

As for the facility of “Yoshiwa Enchanted Village,” it has already been sold to SAKURAO B&D through a bidding process. The details of the sale of the facility and the Enchanted Village were reported in our previous article.

1-1. Concept

According to an announcement by SAKURAO B&D, the new facility will be a theme park attached to a whisky distillery.

[Whisky distillery theme park]

“SAKURAO YOSHIWA WHISKY PARK (tentative name)” will be a theme park attached to a whisky distillery that will attract new whisky fans as well as domestic and international whisky lovers with the aim of communicating and educating the spirit of Japanese craftsmanship and local culture through Japanese whisky. The park will be a whisky distillery theme park that can attract new whisky fans as well as domestic and international whisky lovers.

(Reference: Release information New distillery SAKURAO YOSHIWA WHISKY PARK (tentative name), a theme park with a whisky distillery in a scenic spot)

1-2. About the new distillery

SAKURAO B&D is planning to open a new whisky distillery in Yoshiwa. Details on the size, production volume, and facilities of the new distillery cannot be announced because it is currently in the planning stage, but the type of whisky to be produced is “malt whisky”.

The brand name of the malt whisky produced at Yoshiwa is still in the planning stage, but I guess “Single Malt Yoshiwa” is the most likely name. I can imagine a lot of things.

The Sakurao Distillery, where Sakurao B&D’s flagship malt whisky, “Single Malt Sakurao“, is produced, uses a hybrid distiller to produce both malt and grain whiskies.

Grain whisky is used for “Blended Whisky Togouchi“.

For more information on the existing Sakurao Distillery, please also see the tour report.

1-3. Other contents

As a theme park attached to a whisky distillery, it will be interesting to see what kind of content will be included in addition to the whisky production facilities.

At this stage, there are plans for a new distillery and its tour facilities, a visitor center, a bar, and facilities to sell local specialties. We look forward to the release of more detailed information.

2. Attractions of Yoshiwa, Hatsukaichi City

Yoshiwa, Hatsukaichi City, Hiroshima Prefecture, where the new distillery will be established, is located in the northwestern part of Hatsukaichi City in the mountains of the Chugoku Mountains, an area of heavy snowfall. It is home to Mt. Kanmuri, the headwaters of the Ota River, one of Hiroshima’s most famous first-class rivers. In the spring, melted snow becomes a clear stream, and the scenic Yoshiwa area, with its beautiful mountain streams and abundant nature, is an ideal place for whisky production.

The promotional movie will give you an idea of what kind of environment Yoshiwa has to offer.

SAKURAO B&D’s whisk production is characterized by the Sakurao Distillery‘s susceptibility to sea breezes as a distillery on the ocean side. The aging room in Togouchi is located in a tunnel in the mountains and is characterized by very high humidity and extremely low angel’s share.

And the new Yoshiwa Distillery is located in a mountainous area with heavy snowfall, abundant beautiful water, and extremely high temperature differences throughout the year. I am very much looking forward to seeing how this natural environment will affect the whisky making process.

It will also be very interesting to see how the sake produced in the three different aging environments of Sakurao, Togouchi, and Yoshiwa will be commercialized in the future. We are looking forward to seeing how they will be commercialized.

3. Sakurao Distillery and its products

Please also see here for information on the Sakurao Distillery.

4. Finally

Currently, the number of foreign tourists in Japan is increasing considerably due to the inbound demand for after-corona, but many people are also coming to domestic whisky distilleries.

Suntory’s Yamazaki and Hakushu Distilleries are also renovating their tour facilities to further enhance visitor arrivals.

I have a feeling that the “SAKURAO YOSHIWA WHISKY PARK” will be even more effective in attracting tourists because it is a theme park type.

It was unforeseeable a few years ago that “whisky” would attract tourists from all over the world. I think this is proof that Japanese craftsmanship and whisky making are recognized around the world. We can’t take our eyes off Japanese whisky yet.

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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Japanese Whisky Dictionary