Suntory adds a touch of sakura to its famous blend this year.

After mourning the loss of some big-name Japanese whiskies last year–namely Kirin’s Fuji-sanroku Tarajuku Genshu 50Nikka’s Taketsuru Pure Malt 17, 21, and 25-years, and Suntory’s Hakushu 12-year and Hibiki 17-years–it was a welcome change to hear about the arrival of some new and exciting whiskies from Suntory as we enter 2021.

Kicking off the new whiskies revealed by Suntory today is The Yamazaki Single Malt Limited Edition 2021, which is the first Yamazaki release to be aged in new Mizunara oak barrels.

Masterfully blended with a mix of carefully selected whiskies aged in new Mizunara oak barrels for over 12 years, the Limited Edition 2021 is said to have a smooth, velvety sweetness with bright fruit flavours and a well-balanced taste and aroma.

The next new release is related to the Suntory World Whisky Ao, which is a blend of five world whiskies produced in collaboration with Beam Suntory, an American company which is a subsidiary of Suntory.

Blended by Shinji Fukuyo, Suntory’s 5th-generation chief blender, this premium whisky brings the unique characteristics of the world’s five largest whisky-producing regions– Ireland, Scotland, the U.S., Canada, and Japan–together in one bottle. Said to be the world’s first blend of whiskies from these regions owned by the one company, Suntory’s Ao has been on the market for a while, but what makes this new release so special is the fact that it will now be available in 350-millilitre (11.8-ounce) half-bottles so you can enjoy it “more easily at home”.

▼ Another brand getting a new-bottle release is Suntory’s Chita, which will also become available in 350-millilitre bottles.

Perhaps the most exciting announcement today was the news that Hibiki, Suntory’s premium blended whisky brand, will be getting a new variety called Blossom Harmony. Designed to be used for gift-giving, this new whisky comes packaged in a gorgeous gift box decorated with sakura cherry blossoms.

Blossom Harmony blends Hibiki whisky with whisky finished in cherry barrels, making it the first Hibiki to be aged in sakura wood. This rare blend, only being made in limited numbers, is said to display a gorgeous aroma reminiscent of the blossoms that grow from the cherry tree, with mellow, harmonious flavours and a lingering yet refreshing finish.

Blossom Harmony is set to go on sale around Japan from 25 May at a recommended retail price of 8,000 yen (US$77.04). The Yamazaki Limited Edition 2021 will also be available at the same price nationwide from 25 May, while the 350-millilitre Chita and Ao bottles will be sold from 23 March for 1,900 yen and 2,500 yen respectively.

Sources: PR Times (1, 2, 3, 4)
Featured image: PR Times
Insert images: PR Times (1, 2, 3, 4)

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