Zoetrope Whisky Bar, Shinjuku, Tokyo


A friend of mine warned me about Japanese Whiskies for our recent trip to Tokyo. He said they stopped making 2 of the brands. I thought he meant the limited release or some reserve ones I would find a tad expensive to get. How wrong I was. I had read that a certain brand won the world’s best whisky (much to the chargrin of the Scots) last year and thought that was some sort of marketing exercise.

Due to high demand, most places are out of stock of decent Japanese whiskies in Tokyo itself. Forget about duty free at the airport. I couldn’t order one at a hotel in Hong Kong. Some blogs blame rich Chinese tourists. Other blogs blame a recent Japanese drama series about the founder of Japanese whisky. Maybe all three factors were in play.

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