Friday, February 6, 2015

11 Samurai: SMWS Japanese Releases Launch Event

Post by Stefan Van Eycken, Tokyo

At the end of November 2014, we were thrilled to announce the imminent release of 10 new Japanese SMWS single casks. In the meantime, some of these have been available from Society chapters around the world. Fans back home have had to wait a little longer for these bottles to be shipped back and made available in Japan, but the wait is almost over. The “11 Samurai” have made their way back and to celebrate the occasion, the good folk at the SMWS in Japan are organizing a special event.
You read that right: 11, not 10, Samurai! In addition to the 10 releases previously detailed here, there is an 11th one. And what a stunner this promises to be: 116.19 (Yoichi), “Tobacconist by a sweetie shop”, 20yo, virgin oak puncheon. This release, as well as the 119.14 (Yamazaki) will be available to members in Japan from February 25th (noon) – with the 119.14 being limited to one bottle per member. The remaining nine will go on sale on March 10th (noon), and – to give as many members as possible a chance to get their hands on a bottle –  people will only be able to buy 1 bottle from these 9 releases (until March 13th). This should also make it next to impossible for speculators to instantly flip these highly sought-after bottles on the secondary market.
Back to the event, now. This will be held at the lounge of the Park Hotel in Tokyo on Friday, March 6th from 19:30 to 21:30. All 11 Japanese releases will be available for tasting (making this the perfect platform to figure out which one to try and buy a few days later), and the people at the Society here are planning to bring around 100 other recent bottlings. Shinji Fukuyo and Sakuma Tadashi – chief blenders at Suntory and Nikka, respectively – will be there to offer some comments on the bottlings from their respective stables. The event is limited to 120 people; participation cost is 5,000 yen for members and 6,000 yen for non-members. This will not be nomihodai (all-you-can-drink) style, however. Instead, people attending will receive a welcome drink and 20 vouchers that they can exchange (at varying rates, from 1 to 8) against drams that tickle their fancy. (Extra vouchers will be available for purchase at the venue on the day.) Interested parties can sign up for the event here.

It’s probably best not to wait too long. There is no doubt the “11 Samurai” launch event will be one of the highlights of the year for Japanese whisky fans. Nonjatta will be there, and we’ll report back… after we’ve recovered from all the marvels at the event.

1 comment:

Steven Yeoh said...

Stefan,
I'm based in Singapore but would love to come up if I can get some tickets.
I couldn't purchase any tickets on the link as it's stated that only members can purchase. Am I able to get some tickets to grace this event. Please advise.

Thanks,
Steven