Whisky Live expands in Tokyo

A newfound interest in whisky among Japanese drinkers is driving interest in the upcoming Whisky Live Tokyo 2011, with organizers moving this year's event to a larger and more central location in the city to meet demand.

More than 6,000 people are expected to converge on the Tokyo Midtown complex, in the Roppongi district of the city, for the three-day event. Whisky Live Tokyo starts with a reception for VIPs on February 18, but opens to the public and the industry at large on the following two days.

"We have moved into central Tokyo this year because the venue we have used for the last six years, Tokyo Big Sight, does not have enough space for all the people who want to come," said Kimitaka Toyama, of Whisk-e Ltd., a specialist importer of arguably Scotland's most famous product.

"Most of the visitors will be regular consumers of whisky, and they will be able to meet many of the biggest names in Scottish whisky, as well as major Japanese companies as well," Toyama told Relaxnews. Representatives of Japanese bars and restaurants are also expected to be out in force given the resurgent popularity of scotch in Japan.

"We have had quite a strong whisky culture in Japan for the last 40 or 50 years, although the popularity of the drink had levelled off a few years ago," he added. "That changed a couple of years ago when Suntory began a promotion for highballs using its own brand of whisky, which took off."

According to Suntory Holdings, sales of its Kakubin whisky leapt 70 percent in the first half of 2010 after it began the highball campaign. Demand reached levels so high that the distiller had to put the brakes on further shipments of the amber liquid as the number of bars putting highballs on their menus climbed to 40,000 establishments, up from a mere 15,000 in early 2009.

Whisky's profile has also been helped by the same company fighting off competition from some of the biggest and most traditional names in the whisky industry to win the coveted International Spirits Challenge 2010.

Held in London in November, the Suntory Single Malt Whisky Yamazaki 1984 first won the top prize in the category specifically for whisky, where it had been up against 300 entrants from around the world. The tipple then went on to win the Supreme Champion Spirit award, selected from all the entrants in the various categories.

This is the first time a Japanese product has been awarded the ultimate honor, the company said, in the 15th year of the event.

The VIP reception will mark the opening of the event and will include the announcing of the winners of the 2011 World Whiskies Awards, with the presentation being made by Maiko Itai, the 2010 Miss Universe Japan finalist.

Visitors to the public events will be able to sample products by some of the most well-established distilleries in the world, including Scotland's Bowmore, Springbank and Isle of Arran, as well as the Irish producers Cooley. The event will also include a range of entertainment and, for an additional fee, master classes in whisky appreciation.

Whisky Live Tokyo
February 18-20
Tokyo Midtown, Roppongi 107-0052
http://www.tokyo-midtown.com/en/

Ticket prices: Y5,000 (€44.77) for a one-day ticket and Y9,000 (€80.59) for access on both days.

More information: http://www.whiskylive.com/japan/20/tokyo-2011

JR

News
peopleFrankie Boyle responds to referendum result in characteristically offensive style
Arts and Entertainment
Highs and lows of the cast's careers since 2004
News
news
New Articles
i100... with this review
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebooksA superb mix of recipes serving up the freshest of local produce in a delicious range of styles
Life and Style
ebooksFrom the lifespan of a slug to the distance to the Sun: answers to 500 questions from readers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    IT Administrator - Graduate

    £18000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: ***EXCELLENT OPPORTUNITY FO...

    USA/Florida Travel Consultants £30-50k OTE Essex

    Basic of £18,000 + commission, realistic OTE of £30-£50k : Ocean Holidays: Le...

    Marketing Executive / Member Services Exec

    £20 - 26k + Benefits: Guru Careers: A Marketing Executive / Member Services Ex...

    Sales Account Manager

    £15,000 - £25,000: Recruitment Genius: A fantastic opportunity has arisen for ...

    Day In a Page

    Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

    Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

    Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
    Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

    Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

    The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
    The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

    Scrambled eggs and LSD

    Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
    'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

    'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

    Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
    Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

    New leading ladies of dance fight back

    How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
    Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

    A shot in the dark

    Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
    His life, the universe and everything

    His life, the universe and everything

    New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Save us from small screen superheroes

    Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
    Reach for the skies

    Reach for the skies

    From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
    These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

    12 best hotel spas in the UK

    Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
    These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

    Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

    Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

    Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    How to make a Lego masterpiece

    Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

    Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
    Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

    Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

    His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam