Drink Suntory… Gin? The company behind Bill Murray’s whisky in Lost in Translation has turned their expertise to a premium artisanal gin, distilled using six distinct Japanese botanicals: sakura leaf, sakura flower, gyokuro tea, sencha tea, sanshō pepper, and yuzu. This is the reason behind the gin’s name, ROKU, which is Japanese for the number six.
Even the bottle is designed to fit the theme, as the glass is moulded into a hexagonal bottle to reflect its contents.
The six botanicals are harvested at the peak of their flavour in line with the Japanese tradition of ‘shun’. This means each ingredient is distilled individually according to its best extraction method to ensure its distinct qualities are maintained.
The taste is distinctly gin and brazenly Japanese, with aromas of green tea and cherry blossom alongside eight strands of juniper berry.
Master Distiller Kazuyuki Torii commented that Beam Suntory’s goal with ROKU was “to make something that was unusual, but not strange”. The team has nailed this brief. The aromatic zest of yuzu dominates the first taste before allowing the traditional gin notes to come to the fore.
The fruitful partnership between Jim Beam and Suntory has lead to Beam Suntory becoming the world’s third-largest premium spirits company.
ROKU is available in 700ml bottles from select retailers around the country, for $64.99.