Glenfiddich unveils Grand Yozakura, part of the Grand Series

Glenfiddich Grand Yozakura
Glenfiddich Grand Yozakura

Glenfiddich, the world’s most awarded Single Malt Scotch Whisky, has created the first Single Malt Scotch Whisky to be finished in Okinawa’s exquisitely rare ex-Awamori cask, the latest release within the renowned Grand Series. It is a limited-edition fusion celebrating the finest flavours from Scotland and Japan, with only 315 bottles available in Australia.

Grand Yozakura is a 29 year old Whisky matured at the Glenfiddich Distillery in Dufftown, Scotland, and finished in oak casks that previously matured the oldest distilled alcoholic spirit in Japan, Awamori, producing a finish unlike any other. The Grand Series is a collection of extraordinary single malts that is characterised by innovative and experimental cask finishing and includes Grand Reserva, Grand Cru and Grand Couronne.

Awamori is made using long-grain indica rice and is traditionally stored in clay pots and matured in oak casks. It is said that the technique for making the spirit has not been altered in over 500 years. Only a small proportion of Awamori is aged in oak casks, making them exceptionally rare. Grand Yozakura celebrates Hanami – the “cherry blossom festival”, where Japan appreciates the temporal beauty of nature through the sakura. A time for renewal and optimism, the festival is best experienced and illuminated under the moonlight, where it is known as the Yozakura or ‘night sakura’. This fleeting moment captures a time when nature is honoured, and this marriage of rare liquids, once gone, will never be replicated presenting a transient chance to experience a beautiful collision of cultures and flavours.

Glenfiddich Creative Collaboration Lead & Ambassador, Ross Blainey, commented: “We are always looking for ways to push boundaries in our whisky production. Finding and using these super rare ex-Awamori barrels was a challenge for our team, bringing a whole new, unique element to our single malt. Innovation has always been at the heart of Glenfiddich, and we had to take a chance when making this whisky. We could only get a couple of barrels to do the initial trial and had no idea what effect they would have… It was completely unknown. That is the kind of thing we jump at the opportunity to work with!” 

“Awamori is such a unique spirit with incredible culture and history, as well as a beautiful texture and flavour. It’s fascinating that after almost 136 years of whisky-making at Glenfiddich, we can still challenge convention by finding new ways to make some absolutely delicious single malt. Finishing in the ex-Awamori cask compliments the iconic distillery style of Glenfiddich and elevates the taste and structure to a new level. This is truly unlike any whisky I have tasted before.” 

The packaging of Grand Yozakura brings this meeting of cultures to life with a signature illustration created by Japanese artist June, who creates visions incorporating Japanese culture and landscapes. The packaging includes a bespoke topper and a traditional poem printed onto each specially designed outer.

Only 315 bottles of Grand Yozakura will be available for purchase at Dan Murphy’s and Vintage Cellars, at a retail price of $2,760.

Grand Yozakura is the latest addition to the series, which includes Glenfiddich Grand Cru, aged for 23 years in American and European oak casks and then finessed in French Cuvée oak casks; Glenfiddich Gran Reserva, patiently mellowed for 21 years in European and American Oak casks before a final flourish in Caribbean Rum casks; Grande Couronne, a 26-year-old Scotch Whisky matured in American and European oak casks finished for up to two years in meticulously sourced French Cognac casks; and Gran Cortes, a refined Glenfiddich whisky aged for 22 years in traditional Sherry oak before finishing in very rare Palo Cortado Sherry casks.

To celebrate the release of this exceptionally rare Single Malt Scotch Whisky, culinary and whisky enthusiasts in Sydney and Melbourne will be able to enjoy this exquisite 29 Year Old expression at the following venues:

Ante (Jazza Kissu, “listening bar”), Newtown – from 5 October
The renowned Sydney bar will be offering an indulgent Japanese-inspired sticky date pudding with caramel and ice cream made using spent lees from saké, which will be perfectly paired with a serve of 29 Year Old Grand Yozakura whisky, for a limited time, at $195.00. A carefully crafted Grand Yozakura inspired cocktail, using Glenfiddich 14yo and Awamori will be available for $24.00.

Society, Collin St, Melbourne – from 10 October
Led by Glenfiddich Creative Collaboration Lead Ross Blainey, luxury whisky enthusiasts will be able to pair complex flavours of the Glenfiddich Grand Series, with extraordinary culinary delights. Guests will begin with truffled honeycomb crumpets, crab and cucumber tarts, and a Glenfiddich Awamori Sour cocktail. Then, indulge with dishes like pearl meat tempura with Taramasalata, paired with Glenfiddich’s 15 Year Old Solera. Also on the menu, the exquisite Japanese wagyu with black garlic is paired with Glenfiddich 23 Year Old Grand Cru and 26 Year Old Grande Couronne.

Atrium Bar, Crown Melbourne– from 4 October
The sophisticated lounge will offer a 30ml straight serve of Grand Yozakura to unveil its indulgent layered flavours to Australia. For those seeking an enchanting and harmonious blend of sweet and sour notes, the “Berry Blossom” cocktail will also be available for a limited time. Crafted with precision, this exquisite drink features the Glenfiddich 12 Year Old, and Chambord, a luscious raspberry liqueur, creating a delightful contrast to the whisky. A Cherry Rosemary Shrub is also used to further elevate the cocktail’s flavour profile. The “Berry Blossom” cocktail, priced at $30, is a sublime tribute to the Grand Yozakura, offering a rich tapestry of flavours that are sure to captivate the senses and leave a lasting impression.