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Something I've recognized in the past year is that popular Asian whiskies exist. And yet, I've never purchased whisky from Asia, usually only picking up bottles out of Canada, the U.S. or Britain.

So I wonder, what is the whisky market like across Asia, what styles of whisky are they producing, and what are some of the more popular distilleries producing medium to high quality product?

  • After a quick web search, most whiskys coming out of asia and the best are from Japan, are in the Scottish style. – farmersteve Dec 23 '16 at 17:26
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Suntory and Kavalan whiskey have really put Asian Whiskey on "the map." The Yamazaki Single Malt Sherry Cask, by Suntory even won Jim Murray's Whiskey of the Year in 2015.

The styles are the same as other distiller's, though I am sure there are a few exceptions. Nikka Coffee Grain Whiskey comes to mind. The difference - it seems - is in the craftsmanship. Whatever the Asian distillers are doing... people agree they are doing well.

As a Yamazaki 12 owner - I highly recommend you purchase a bottle. Everyone I've ever let try it (I don't tell people when I hand it to them to avoid the "oh I heard this is great so let me rave about it" effect) absolutely raves about it. Even my wife, who normally hates the smell of my spirits, will sip on this neat. If the price tag scares you away, find a friend willing to share a sip or two.

  • So in terms of style, you're suggesting that Asia produces the full range of classic styles found in the Western world: Rye, Bourbon, Scotch, etc? Do you know if any of these stand out from others in predominance? – Canadian Coder Dec 29 '16 at 14:29
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    Asia can't produce scotch or bourbon. Only Scottish whisky can be called scotch, and only American whisky can be called bourbon. – SPavel Dec 29 '16 at 19:50
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    You're right. Only Scotch can be made in Scotland. But I can use the same grain bill as any Scotch and use the same aging process. It just can't be called Scotch. The same styles exist but region specific names exist to denote (using the term loosely) superiority. Jack Daniels is whiskey. They just helped coin bourbon to differentiate between all of the "sub-par" whiskeys. – BryceH Dec 29 '16 at 19:54

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