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December 20, 2021

“Today, more than 50 base ingredients can be used to make honkaku shochu […] Koji, Japan’s national mold, which isused to make sake, soy sauce, miso, and a wide variety of other traditional Japanese culinary staples, must be used to saccharify starches in the production of honkaku shochu. After fermentation, it must be distilled in a pot still, and nothing can be added after distillation other than water and time.”


November 22, 2021

Judge’s blind tasting comment about Takamine 8 Yr Koji Whiskey

Awarded Double-Gold and Best in Class

“Yes. Just yes. Excited to find out what this one is. A distinctive whiskey with gorgeous structure—flavors of vanilla, black cherry, and melon are sharp and pleasant, before a subtle, dry finish.”


August 30, 2021

“Now, 130 years later, his dream project has been revived and the product is available as Takamine 8 Years Whisky.It was awarded a Gold Medal at the San Francisco Wine & Spirits Competition this year.” […] “The new product is an 8-year-old, 80-proof whisky made with 100% barley and aged in 90% virgin American oak, 10% ex-bourbon barrels.”


Summer, 2021

“The most important thing is that koji itself imparts umami and is a natural flavor enhancer for the other ingredients during fermentation. Therefore, these drinks are highly aromatic and flavorful.”


June 30, 2021

“On this edition of The NOLADrinks Show with Bryan Dias we discuss an important indigenous Japanese spirit – Shochu! […] We chat with two experts and authors, Christopher Pellegrini and Stephen Lyman, who also operate a Shochu portfolio called, “Honkaku Spirits.”


June 21, 2021

“The whiskey itself, made with koji-saccharified pearled barley and distilled twice in a pot still, is delicate but well-structured, perfumed with stone fruit, and surprisingly viscous for its 40 percent ABV. It’s unique among Japan’s current whiskey offerings, even standing apart from other koji whiskies made with rice.”


June 10, 2021

“…and a barley-based koji whisky called Takamine have hit American shores in the last few years. […] Because of their cask maturation, koji whiskies share many common hallmarks of other whisky styles, but also offer a compelling umami character and certain distinctive flavors.”



April 29, 2021

Honkaku Spirits of Fukuoka, Japan, is proud to announce the U.S. debut of Takamine Whiskey, an 8 year-old, 80-proof, 100% barley, koji-fermented whiskey, which was awarded a Gold Medal at the San Francisco Wine & Spirits Competition (2021).