Australians love their beers and wines. But do you think that the only alcoholic beverages that belong on your shelf are single malts or fruity wines? Think again. Buy Japanese whisky for your next dinner party and introduce your guests to a more nuanced alcohol experience.
Japanese expert blenders experiment with an unlimited variety of aged whiskies matured in more than a dozen distinct kinds of barrels. They are distilled with various grains as they spend decades honing the art of whiskey mixing.
Since very little information on whiskey production existed before the renowned founding of Suntory’s Yamazaki Distillery in the early 20th century, the past of Japanese whisky is largely unknown. What is known is that certain slouch and sake producers began making Japanese whiskey in the 1850s.
When Suntory opened the country’s first recognized whiskey distillery in 1923, the history of whisky in Japan underwent a major change. Japanese whiskey has recently received several international honors, including the Whisky Bible’s Best Whisky in the world, and is in great demand among whisky connoisseurs worldwide.
During early productions, Suntory Shirofuda didn’t appeal to the taste of the Japanese market. But the Suntory Kakubin, the second whiskey made by Suntory, rapidly rose to the top of the sales charts in Japan and remains one of the favorites to date.
Unlike half a decade ago, alcohol is not just for entertainment before dinner. It now has a rightful seat at the table. Navigating whisky and food is not very complicated if you consider a few important points.
If you’re new to whiskey, there are a few things you should know before buy Japanese whisky: sipping it neat will provide you with the complete, smooth, and rich experience necessary to appreciate the spirit.
Only a few drops of room-temperature water can enliven the taste buds or bring out exquisite, subtle flavors such as vanilla and stone fruit. Serving on the rocks is enticing, but it dilutes and masks the taste of the rich goodness. Of course, experimenting with a cocktail is also a viable option.
Japanese whiskies are more approachable than, say, Irish whisky. You could say they are more similar to Australian whiskies, which are lighter. Here are some pointers to understand the pairing of food and whiskies better.
1. Flavor Profile
Japanese whiskies have a wide and evocative range of flavor profiles, ranging from rich to honey sweet, fruity to bitter. Peppery and nutty aromas are common, given to distillers’ long legacy of experimentation and ingenuity.
Japanese spirits often contain hints of salt, making them suitable for complimenting the intense umami taste of Asian cuisine. The most essential thing here is to enjoy yourself!
2. Variety of Japanese Whisky and Food
Let us take a closer look at various whiskies and food pairings that are too good to pass on!
● Suntory Yamazaki and Chocolate Cake
The wine’s floral character with a fruity note from berries is perfect with the richness of the chocolate cake.
● Nikka Taketsuru and Camembert
The peppery vanilla punch and smooth, almost bitter finish of this whisky pair well with the earthy, mushroomy profile of camembert cheese.
● Akashi White Oak and Dark Chocolate
You get a growing violet flavor at first. The bitter flavors of the chocolate combine with the cinnamon undercurrents of the whiskey to create something a little richer.
It is time to dip your toes into the fruitier, earthy notes of Japanese whisky and elevate your drinking experience.