[Review] Single Malt Japanese Whisky Fuji

Whisky Review
Whisky Review
Fujigotenba Distillery

A new single malt whisky from Kirin Brewery Company, Limited.

The “Fuji” brand was introduced in 2020; “Single Grain Whisky Fuji” was released in April 2020 and “Single Blended Japanese Whisky Fuji” in June 2022.
“Fuji,” which has been focused on grain whisky, is finally being released as a single malt.
Blended only with malt whisky from the Fuji Gotemba Distillery, it is characterized by a rich, fruity taste created from a variety of malt whisky.

The main ingredient is bourbon barrels, but beer-aged and wine-aged barrels are also used to add floral and fruity flavors and depth to the sweet and floral aroma.

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1. Manufacturer

Kirin Distillery Company, Limited

EstablishmentAugust 1972
Head office970 Shibanta, Gotemba City, Shizuoka Prefecture, 412-0003, Japan
Owned distilleriesFuji Gotemba Distillery

2. Distillery

Fuji Gotemba Distillery

Location970 Shibanta, Gotemba-shi, Shizuoka-ken 412-0003, Japan
Start of operationNovember 1973

August 1972  Kirin-Seagram Company established as a joint venture between Kirin Brewery Company (Japan), JE Seagram Company (U.S., at the time), and Sievers Brothers (U.K.).
November 1973  Fuji Gotemba Distillery completed and production begins.

February 1974  Japanese Whisky “Robert Brown” is released.

July 2002  Company name changed to “Kirin Distillery Company, Limited” (became a wholly owned subsidiary of Kirin Brewery Company, Limited)

September 2005  Japanese Whisky “Kirin Whisky Fuji-Sanroku Barrel Aged 50°” and “Kirin Whisky Fuji-Sanroku Single Malt 18 Years” are released.

March 2016  “Kirin Whisky Fuji-Sanroku Blended 18 Years Old” released; “Kirin Whisky Fuji-Sanroku Barrel-Aged Original Sake 50°” released.

August 2018  “Fuji-Sanroku Signature Blend” is released.

April 2020  “Kirin Single Grain Whisky Fuji” is released.

Fuji, “Kirin Distillery Company Limited’s Fuji Gotemba Distillery” is one of the few whisky distilleries in the world to handle the entire process from preparation to bottling of malt and grain whiskies.
The distillery produces a wide variety of Kirin Group products, including whisky, mineral water, and canned chuhai, in a natural environment blessed with abundant subterranean water from Fuji, a cool climate, and frequent fog throughout the year.

In February 2019, the company invested approximately 8 billion yen to expand its production facilities in preparation for further increases in whisky sales volume in the future.
In order to produce a wide variety of malt whisky base whisky, four new small fermentation tanks and two lines of four distillers were installed to approximately double the base whisky production capacity, and the barrel storage capacity was increased by approximately 20% through renewal and enlargement of the barrel aging warehouse. The new facility will start operation in June 2021.

Reference: Kirin Distillery Company Limited official website

For more information about Fuji Gotemba Distillery, please see also here↓.

https://en.jpwhisky.net/japanesedistillery-2-3542/#4-5_Fuji_Gotemba_Distillery_Kirin_Distillery”]

3. Product name and photo

Single Malt Japanese Whisky Fuji
Single Malt Japanese Whisky FUJI

4. Characteristics

Light and floral malt base whisky that has been traditionally produced as a “clean and esteemed” style, which has been our commitment since the foundation of the company, and fruity and creamy malt base whisky produced by the production method with advanced preparation and fermentation. Single Malt Whisky Fuji uses these two types of malt whisky. This time, we have decided to use a new type of malt whisky developed in the 2010s because it has matured and developed a fruity aroma as we had hoped.

The barrels used were mainly American white oak bourbon barrels, which Fuji Gotemba Distillery is particular about, but we also used beer barrels and French oak wine barrels, which we had been working on to create a rich flavor. These barrels add floral flavors from the beer barrel aging and fruitiness and depth from the wine barrel aging to the sweet and gorgeous aroma from the bourbon barrel aging.
Single Malt Whisky Fuji has a fruity and mellow flavor that evokes the beauty and vitality of the majestic Fuji. We hope that this mellow flavor and its long-lasting aftertaste will fill your heart and make you happy.

Reference: [Includes glass] Kirin Single Malt Japanese Whisky Fuji (700ml)|KIRIN official mail order DRINX

4-1. Tasting Notes

AromaMilky, vanilla cream, caramelized and savory aroma
TasteBurnt caramel, ripe pineapple, mellow and medium-bodied
Aftertaste

Sweet apple and peach with a short, clean finish.

4-2. Product Specifications

Alcohol content46%
By SakeMalt
Barrel typeBourbon barrels, beer barrels, wine barrels
Volume700ml
Number of bottles sold
Suggested retail price6,600 yen (tax included)
Release dateMay 16, 2023

5. Awards

No awards received at this time.

6. Price

6-1. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price

Product nameSingle Malt Japanese Whisky Fuji
Capacity700ml
Suggested Retail PriceTax included: 6,600 yen

6-2. Resale price on Mercari

We could not confirm the resale price on Mercari. (*As of 5/17/2023)

6-3. Sold price on Yahoo! Auction

We could not confirm any listings on Yahoo! Auctions. (*As of 5/17/2023)

6-4. Rakuten, Yahoo Shopping, Amazon

On mail order websites, they are priced around 5,000 yen to 6,000 yen. (*As of 5/17/2023)

6-5. Prices offered at BAR Shinkai

At “BAR Shinkai” operated by this site, one glass, 45ml: 1,980 yen 30ml: 1,320 yen, 15ml: 660 yen.

https://en.jpwhisky.net/about-2/barshinkai-4/

7. Summary

Recommended way to enjoy (manufacturer’s reference)

We recommend starting straight with a spoonful and adding 1 to 3 spoons of water to enjoy the changes in aroma.
By gradually adding water, you can enjoy a wide range of aromatic changes, from a complex, sweet aroma like crème brûlée, to a fruit tart with ripe fruit, to fruitcake with added freshness, to fruit flavored tea with added floral notes.
The flavor seems to change noticeably with the addition of water, one spoonful at a time, as described above. Kirin is the only company that gives such detailed comments on the aroma, which is a very good sign that the blender is confident and wants people to enjoy the whisky.

■Please check out our other articles on Kirin.

https://en.jpwhisky.net/2022/07/26/kirin-single-blended-whisky-fuji-2/

https://en.jpwhisky.net/kirin-single-grain-whisky-fuji-2-3488/

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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.

この記事を書いた人
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
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