World Whiskey Day is coming up on May 19—and if there’s one thing the whiskey world knows, it’s that Japan is hot (even sparking an aged whiskey shortage). Here, our pros share their buying tips from the Land of the Rising Sun.

See also: Where to celebrate World Whiskey Day in Bangkok 


Under B1,500 

 


Suntory White, B1,250

“Suntory White is the Suntory distillery’s oldest product, put on the market by the company founder, Shinjiro Torii. It might not be quite as refined as the higher level products like Hibiki or Yamazaki, but it is definitely part of the Japanese whiskey history.” ­— Koji Hara


Under B2,500

 


Mars Iwai Tradition, B2,400


“For when you want something better than a Suntory but don’t want to splurge on a Yamazaki or Hibiki.” — Ping Chareonsri


Under B3,500

 


Suntory Royal, B3,200


“Suntory Royal blended whiskey was first introduced in 1960 to mark the company’s 60th anniversary. The owner of Suntory also handled all the process of making this whiskey.” — Koji Hara


Under B5,000

 


Ichiro’s Malt & Grain Chichibu Blended Whiskey, B4,600


“The whiskey is a blend of all the famous small distilleries in Japan.” — Koji Hara
 

 

Hibiki Japanese Harmony, B4,800


”I picked this one because it’s good enough that you can just have it neat. With its slight hint of floral aroma on top of the complex taste of cherry and mizuna [“Japanese mustard”], and the price—it’s definitely worth paying for.” — Nawin Pimolrat
 

 

Yamazaki Single Malt Whisky - Distiller’s Reserve, B4,990


“We all know that Yamazaki Whiskey is good quality whiskey but you can buy this bottle easily in Bangkok without breaking the bank. Drink it neat; with an ice cube; or with drops of mineral water to enjoy all the characters it has to offer.” — Nawin Pimolrat

Budget not important

 


Ichiro’s Malt Double Distilleries, B10,000


“A whiskey of two generations. The maker at Ichiro combines his single malt with his grandfather’s single malt from a now closed-down distillery. A nice blend of nuttiness and a spicy finish. Great neat with a drop of mineral water or on the rocks.” - Ping Chareonsri  

Essentials

Wishbeer. Sukhumvit Soi 67, 02-392-1403. www.wishbeer.com

Godfather. 4/F, Central Embassy, 1031 Ploen Chit Rd., 081-818-8758. Open daily 10am-10pm
2/F, The Crystal Park,  215 Pradit Manutham Rd., 061-175-3536. Open daily 10am-10pm

Bacchus Global. 02-662-6176, info@bacchusglobal.co.th


The experts

 

 

Koji Hara is the managing & director, sommelier and sake master at Bacchus Global, aka the company that brings us Hibiki, Yamazaki and other premium Japanese spirits. He also owns this speakeasy Salon du Japonisant.

 

 

Ping Chareonsri mastered his craft in Washington D.C. before moving back to Bangkok to open up Japanese restaurant Fillets.  He now stands behind the bar at Marriott Marquis’s ABar as the head bartender.

 

Nawin Pimpolrat is the man who looks after all the drinks at 72 Courtyard. He was the one that created those yummy-but-not-cheesy punches at Bar Savoy and trains all the bartenders for every bar inside 72.