[Review] Single Cask Tsunuki AGED 6 YEARS Cask No.T121

Whisky Review
Whisky Review
Hombo ShuzoTsunuki Distillery

Limited edition from Mars Tsunuki Distillery.Review ofsingle cask Tsunuki AGED 6 YEARS Cask No. T121. Features, price, and how to buy.

This product won the WWA 2024 Single Cask category Best Japanese Single Cask (Japan’s highest award).


1. Manufacturer.

Hombo Shuzo K.K. is a Kagoshima Prefecture company that mainly produces shochu (distilled spirit). It has a long history in whiskey, having obtained a license for whiskey production in 1949.

Company NameHonbo Shuzo Brewery Co.
Head office location891-0122; 3-27 Minamiei, Kagoshima City, Kagoshima Prefecture
Owned distilleriesMars Shinshu Distillery, Mars Tsunuki Distillery

What is Mars Tsunuki Distillery?

Location6594, Kaseda-Tsunuki, Minamisatsuma-shi, Kagoshima-ken 899-3611
Start of operation2016

Tsunuki in Kaseda, Minamisatsuma City. Mars Tsunuki Distillery, the southernmost whisky distillery on the mainland, is located in the mountains full of greenery in the southwest of Satsuma Peninsula.

Tsunuki, located in the southwestern part of the Satsuma Peninsula, is in a long basin along the Kaseda River, a tributary of the Manose River. Surrounded by Mt. Kurata (475m) to the east and Mt. Nagaya (513m) to the west, the basin-like topography makes the summers hot and the winters cold, which are extremely severe in South Satsuma.
The area has a natural environment that is a “blessing from nature” with good water resources (Mt. Kurata spring water), and is known as “Tsunuki Mikan” (mandarin oranges) because of the effective use of the mountain slopes.
Blessed with a mild climate and good water resources, Tsunuki is the birthplace of the Honbo Sake Brewery. It has been more than 100 years since the brewery started making shochu using Satsuma sweet potatoes, one of Satsuma’s most popular specialties, and the brewery is now engaged in whiskey production in Tsunuki, where the tradition of sake brewing is handed down to the present.
Reference: Mars Tsunuki Distillery official website

For more information about Mars Tsunuki Distillery, please see also here↓.

津貫蒸溜所 | ジャパニーズウイスキーディクショナリー
Japanese Whisky Dictionary

3. photos of the bottles and the website where you can buy them

Single Cask Tsunuki AGED 6YEARS Cask No.T121
Single Cask Tsunuki 6years Cask No.T121


4. features of Single Cask Tsunuki AGED 6 YEARS Cask No.T121

Limited edition of 215 single cask whiskies
Tsunuki, the birthplace of the Honbo Brewery, is located in the green mountains southwest of Satsuma Peninsula. Mars Tsu Distillery is located in a basin with warm but cold temperatures and blessed with high-quality spring water.
Single Cask Tsunuki AGED 6 YEARS Cask No.T121″ is a rare single cask whisky, which is made by carefully selecting and bottling one barrel of lightly peated (3.5ppm) malt whisky that has been aged for more than 6 years in bourbon barrels from the malt whisky distilled and matured at Tsunuki.

Reference: Single Cask Tsunuki AGED 6 YEARS Cask No.T121 | Japanese Whiskey | Hombo Shuzo Official Website (hombo.co.jp )

4-1. Tasting Notes

AromaMidori, custard with citrus, mint
TasteSweet potato yokan, harmonious Tsunuki-like sweetness and fresh acidity
AftertasteLong-lasting sweetness and savory aroma

4-2. Product Specifications

Alcohol content53% (with a slight alcohol content)
By SakeSingle Malt (Cask) Japanese Whiskey
Cask typeBourbon barrel (cask number: T121)
Number of bottles sold215 bottles
Suggested Retail Price13,200 yen (including tax)
Release dateApril 2024

5. Awards

WWA 2024 Single Cask Category

Best Japanese Single Cask (Japan’s highest award)

6. List Price and Online Price

6-1. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price

Product NameSingle Cask Tsunanuki AGED 6 YEARS Cask No.T121
Suggested Retail Price13,200 yen (including tax)

6-2. Resale price on Mercari

We could not confirm the resale price on Mercari. (*As of 5/7/2024)

6-3. Sold price on Yahoo! Auction

There appears to be no listing on Yahoo! Auctions at this time. (*As of 5/7/2024)

6-4. Rakuten, Yahoo Shopping, Amazon

No sales were confirmed on mail order sites. (*as of 5/7/2024)


6-5. Prices offered at BAR Shinkai

At “BAR Shinkai” operated by this site, oneglass is offered at 45 ml: 4,620 yen, 30 ml: 3,080 yen, and 15 ml: 1,540 yen.

Information about “BAR Shinkai”
Japanese Whisky Dictionary operates three BAR Shingai stores in Minato Ward, Tokyo. In addition to the Japanese whiskeys introduced on this site, they also hand...

7. Summary

Tsunuki distillery has already entered its 8th year, and has gained various exposures such as embarking on local barley and winning WWA awards.

We would also like to support Tsunuki distillery as a pioneer in promoting the Kagoshima whiskey scene together with related distilleries such as Hinokami distillery and Yamaga distillery.

■Please take a look at other articles about “Hombo Shuzo and Mars Whiskey.

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[Review] Single Malt Tsunuki 202...
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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.

Ryuhei Oishi

Bartender at bar Shinkai Toranomon, born in Hokkaido.
After working at a restaurant in Tokyo, became a certified sommelier by the Japan Sommelier Association.
I became interested in Japanese whiskey, of which he had little knowledge, and started working at bar Shinkai. I went to distilleries to talk to the distillers and joined JWD to share their passion and information as a bartender.

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Japanese Whisky Dictionary