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    28 Jun 2018


    The brewery

    Wakatsuru Brewery is located in the Toyama Prefecture in the Hokuriku region (northwestern part of Honshu, the main island of Japan). It started out as a sake brewery in 1882. The Wakatsuru Saburomaru whisky distillery was born when the company obtained license to make whisky in 1952 on the watch of Kotaro Inagaki, son of the brewery's founder, since rice was difficult to get ahold of in post-war Japan.

    However, after 60 years, the distillery became run down and Wakatsuru Brewery launched the Saburomaru Distillery Repair Project in 2016 and turned to crowd funding to secure the funds.

    Wakatsuru’s passion for whisky production that has been protected for more than 60 years and the aspiration to develop Toyama whisky in the global market, was met with a remarkable success, and a total of 38,255,000 yen, far exceeding the target of 25 million yen, was collected from 463 supporters.

    With the support of many people, in July 2017, Saburomaru Distillery transformed itself into the only whisky distillery in Hokuriku that welcomes visitors for a distillery tour.


    Umesky is a unique blend of whisky and ume fruits. Every July unripe ume is steeped in the whisky made in the distillery, slowly drawing out the sweetness and sourness of ume. Ume is harvested in Toyama prefecture and it is steeped for around a year in the whisky. The result is hard to describe but the delicate aroma of ume and the smooth whiskey are the characteristics of Umesky. At the first sip, you will feel the acidity of ume (which is a little bit stronger that regular umeshu), and then the smooth taste of whisky will follow soon after.

    There are many ways to drink Umesky. The best way is to enjoy it straight or on rocks, but you can also try diluting with water or soda water, or even hot water. We recommend enjoying Umesky on its own first, but if you want to try paring it with foods, choose something that is not too overpowering in flavor.

    Do not miss an opportunity to try the one and only Umesky!