Stefanie Collins, editor bars&clubs
Suntory has released its latest blend with the launch of Hibiki Japanese Harmony whisky, available in the Australian market from this month.
Developed by third-generation Master Blender Shingo Torii and fourth-generation Chief Blender Shinji Fukuyo, Hibiki Japanese Harmony is a blend of more than 12 malt and grain whiskies from Suntory’s Yamazaki, Hakushu and Chita distilleries.
The whisky is presented in a 24-faceted glass bottle, symbolising the 24 seasons of the old Japanese lunar calendar, and pays homage to the original Hibiki blend. Fukuyo has used the exact malt and grain whiskies that went into the first Hibiki blend – American White Oak malt whiskies for the base, accentuated by rare Mizunara (Japanese oak) and sherry malt whiskies.
The whisky is described as having aromas of rose and lychee, with hints of rosemary, mature woodiness, and sandalwood. The palate has honey-like sweetness, candied orange peel and white chocolate, with a long, subtle finish.
It is recommended that Hibiki Japanese Harmony be enjoyed neat, blended with water, mixed as a cocktail, or served with a hand-carved ice ball for the full Japanese whisky experience.
To further introduce the new whisky, and following on from the success of 2014, The House of Suntory Exclusive Takeover will return to Sydney and Melbourne throughout winter.
Designed around the idea of omotenashi – the Japanese spirit of hospitality – the takeovers will feature specially designed three and six course paired menus. Created exclusively for the pop up the menus will include bespoke Suntory Whisky cocktails and izakaya style bar food.
While the 2014 event was a one-night-only affair, this year will see The House of Suntory run on each Wednesday of July at Melbourne’s Hihou, Japanese bar and dining room, before arriving in Sydney at new Japanese small bar, Tokyo Bird, in August.
According to Narelle McDonald, Beam Suntory Australia Group Marketing Manager, the company has expanded the takeover series to get more Australians acquainted with Suntory Whisky.
“In line with true Japanese hospitality, we want everyone to enjoy the subtle complexity of Suntory Whisky,” she says. “We are excited to welcome a new whisky masterpiece to this year’s events, Hibiki Japanese Harmony.”
Alongside the new blend, the full Suntory Whisky portfolio will also be available at The House of Suntory events.
Prices are $55 per person for a three course tasting menu, while a six course dinner will cost $120 per person. Suntory Whisky drinks with matching bar snacks will also be available daily throughout the month of July. Bookings can be placed through the venues.
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