Japanese whisky heavyweight House of Suntory has introduced a premium Japanese vodka called Haku to the UK on-trade.
The 40% ABV vodka has been created using Japanese ingredients, namely a neutral grain of white rice.
Production begins in Kagoshima, Kyushu, a region historically famous for its rice spirits. The white rice is fermented with koji rice to create a mash, which is then distilled through pot and column stills.
Following this, the liquid is blended and filtered through bamboo charcoal in Osaka, Japan – a process “unique to Suntory”, which “preserves and enhances the rice’s sweet and subtle flavours”.
According to Suntory, the resulting liquid has a soft, delicate and floral aroma, rich palate and smooth, sophisticated finish.
Haku can be served neat, on the rocks or in the simple Haku-Hi cocktail, made with chilled soda water and lemon peel.
Nick Ganich, Edrington-Beam Suntory’s UK head of brands for Beam Suntory, said: “We are thrilled to release Haku Vodka in the UK as part of the House of Suntory.
“The launch of this new vodka creates great opportunity for craft spirits enthusiasts to discover new tastes and experiences that further embody master distiller Shinjiro Torii’s vision of a challenge and quest for excellence.”
Kazuyuki Torii, Suntory specialist for gin and spirits, added: “For the House of Suntory, craftsmanship has always translated to sourcing the best ingredients, and elaborating on complex and innovative techniques to create unrivaled quality spirits.
“This unique vodka was developed from a vision to create a truly authentic Japanese product that meets the demand for a meticulously crafted vodka with a distinct and balanced taste.”
Haku Vodka is currently available in a select number of bars and restaurants, including Nobu, The Ritz and Roka.