Yamazaki single malt Whisky

Japan‘s top whisky distiller has started accepting orders for a limited run of a whisky that has been aged in oak barrels for more than 50 years.

Shipments of the Yamazaki Single Malt 50-Year-Old Whisky will begin on Dec 13, in response to orders taken at department stores and liquor shops across Japan.

Suntory said it is only producing 150 bottles, but added that demand had already been strong and that it is considering another similar release in the future.

Whisky is enjoying a renaissance in Japan, in part because of the newfound popularity of the highball among a new generation of drinkers, but also because of the growing reputations of Japanese distillers.

Suntory, for example, took the top prizes in the International Spirits Challenge, held in London in November 2010, with its 1984 Single Malt winning both the best whisky in the competition and the Supreme Champion Spirit award.

With the release of its 50-year-old vintage whisky, Suntory is aiming to promote interest among connoisseurs.

The company said the drink had been matured in barrels of Japanese oak that has helped to create a fragrance and flavor that are unique.

Reddish-amber in color, the taste is both mellow and strong, reminiscent of rich, ripe fruit, while the aftertaste is sweet and faintly smoky.

Each 700-milliliter bottle will be priced at Y1 million (€9,511).