After a seemingly endless amount of time spent in production,
the whisky is at last provided to the blenders for the finishing touches.
Every day we taste 200-300 different whiskies to check their maturation progress,
and to decide which whiskies will be used for which Suntory whisky brand.
No machines are involved here. We use only our finely tuned senses.
One blender made it a rule
to eat the same meals every day so his palate wouldn’t change.
It is this kind of dedication that allows us
to makes such high quality whisky.
The job of a blender goes beyond just tasting and blending whiskies.
Blenders are also responsible for creating new whisky characteristics,
and maintaining quality so that the characters of existing products do not change.
Sometimes, this job requires them to go into the forests
in search of ideal cask materials.
It takes a diverse range of whiskies and the firm willpower of blenders
to create the Yamazaki single malt whisky.
Without both of these elements, a whisky can never be complete.
Another important job required of blenders is having a vision for the future
—how much of what kind of whisky will be needed in years to come.
Whisky takes a long time to mature, and what is prepared now
will not be ready for use until ten, or even twenty years from now.
In our minds are more than one million barrels of whisky,
as well as an image of what whiskies will be needed in the future.
It is with these images in mind that we manage our stock.
Blenders live in the present while constantly conversing
with the past and the future.